A Call to Save Stockton Street

Societies can rise or fall based on the quantity and quality of their public spaces. New decent public spaces are rare and precious is the day when there’s a chance of a new one. Does it matter if you live near that proposed space? No. Any new public space is a beacon to the world, showing that we need and can have public spaces everywhere.

So let us celebrate the possibility that this street…Stockton-Before
…could become this…
Stockton-After
This is Stockton Street in downtown San Francisco and the conceptual rendering above is from the Lower Stockton Improvement Project. The project would turn three blocks of Stockton from yet another auto sewer into a car-free pedestrian-transit-bicycle mall. People would flock to the space, bus and bicycle access and safety would improve, and merchants would be jumping for joy. Here’s the backstory behind this project.

See here for the full proposal and below for more visuals.

Stockton-overhead-map
Stockton-Market-to-Geary-cross-section

The bad news? It might not happen. The San Francisco Examiner reports that Rose Pak, a prominent power player in nearby Chinatown, is claiming to represent Chinatown merchants in an effort shut down the project. And she says she’s already won. “I consider the issue closed,” says Rose.

Here’s where you come in. We need you and as many people as possible to tell the powers-that-be: Keep the Lower Stockton Improvement Project alive. If we don’t mobilize, the project could be stopped in its tracks. But if we step up, the results could be a game-changer, not only for San Francisco but for towns and cities everywhere that notice what San Francisco does.

So, sign the Lower Stockton petition today – and tell your friends. It’ll go to the parties listed below, the folks who will decide the Project’s fate. I also suggest editing the petition’s message to fit your own voice.

This is worth your time. Once you’ve signed the petition pat yourself on the back. You’re a star.

Now, sign the petition! (click on this link and scroll down to the Lower Stockton Improvement Project petition form).

Thanks Adam, from Streetsblog, for putting this effort together!

ALSO ON STREETSBLOG

Touring Stockton Street: a New Perspective

|
From SPUR: Between Sacramento Street and Broadway, Stockton Street boasts the most heavily used commercial strip in all of San Francisco. Where else can you find colorful displays, fresh and inexpensive produce, and live chickens all in one location? Join SPUR and the Chinatown Community Development Center for a youth-led tour of Stockton Street. The […]

Great Streets Project Quantifies the Impacts of Parklets

|
Nearly two years after the first parklet arrived in San Francisco, a new study provides an empirical assessment of reclaiming parking spots for public space. The 2011 Parklet Impact Study [PDF], released yesterday by the SF Great Streets Project, measures changes in pedestrian volumes and activity at three new parklets built last year. The study, […]

Chinatown Businesses Thrive During a Week Without Car Parking

|
What would happen if, one day, the city decided to make better use of the car parking on a commercial corridor like Stockton Street in Chinatown? “What about the businesses?” opponents might exclaim. “Where would their customers park?” The myth of the urban driving shoppers was debunked again over the past week or so, when […]

To Boost Shopping in Chinatown, SF Brings Back Ban on Car Parking

|
In San Francisco’s Chinatown, removing car parking is great for business. Last year’s week-long trial removal of parking on five blocks of Stockton Street was so popular, in fact, that Mayor Ed Lee announced today that the program would return for another two-week run. The parking removal will make more room for vendors and the influx of […]

Muni’s Sluggish 30-Stockton Finally Set to Get Greater Priority on the Streets

|
Muni’s notoriously sluggish 30-Stockton line is finally set to get some upgrades that will give buses higher priority on streets through the dense neighborhoods of Union Square, Chinatown, North Beach, and near Fisherman’s Wharf. The plans, part of the SFMTA’s “Muni Forward” program, include transit-only lanes, bus bulb-outs and boarding islands, transit signal priority, and […]