Transbay CAC Meeting 7-10-2008 Observations
|July 10, 2008||Posted by jamie under Meetings||
It was good to see our friends Mike Grisso from the Redevelopment Agency, Josh Switzky from the Planning Department, Chris Jaksa from the Rincon Hill neighborhood, and the familiar face of Norm Rolfe among others at tonight’s Transbay CAC meeting.
Bruce Balshone was formally elected Chair of the Committee tonight – congratulations Bruce.
The Infrastructure Needs item on the meeting agenda wasn’t quite what I was projecting it would be about. Rather than an opportunity to talk about pedestrian safety measures and traffic calming, it was concentrated on utilities’ capacities to provide services for the buildout of the Transbay Project Area. Water, electricity, and that sort of thing. They did kindly let me bring up my hope that any new indoor privately owned public open space (POPOS) be available to the public beyond the common 8am – 5pm hours of the existing POPOSes. The indoor POPOSes are built by developers to provide a public benefit in exchange for adding more leaseable square footage. However, the current rules only require them to be open from 8am to 5pm, and the indoor spaces become rentable revenue producing spaces after those hours. If we’re going to give developers the benefit of adding additional square footage under the guise of a public benefit that they provide, it seems to me that they should be required to offer that public benefit at hours of the day when residents in the area can actually use the space for meetings. The indoor POPOSes would be great for meetings – as opposed to the outdoor open spaces that, between wind, traffic noise, and other uncontrollable elements, make for undesirable community meeting spots. Anyway … I tossed in my 2 cents on that topic.
In other news, Block 8 redevelopment plans are rolling along. There was some interesting discussion about how parking would be allotted between the inclusionary units and market rate units. The Block 11 redevelopment area RFP is scheduled for release in August (along with Block 8). Josh is working on some additional Planning Department presentations about the Transbay District. You may recall Rob Black attending our May meeting and discussing a Community Benefit District. That appears to be on schedule for a vote in mid-2009 for the Rincon Hill neighborhood (which includes the Transbay Project area). I’m not sure where I stand on the CBD at this point. The residential condo complexes all seem to do a pretty good job of keeping the sidewalks clean around our buildings as a benefit of the HOA fees we pay in. A lot of the commerical office buildings also do a good job of keeping things clean. The only eyesores seem to be the state owned property that U.S. Parking runs as parking lots and pockets around the Transbay Terminal. With a temporary terminal tossing U.S. Parking out of their main parking lot area, I hope that those sidewalks will be cleanued up by the SFMTA folks. So…. (shrug) not so sure we really need another tax for a CBD. We’ll see…