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northbay Apr 7, 2008 6:06 AM

Quote:

Originally Posted by BTinSF (Post 3465764)
I knew what you mean by "negative space" but I don't think the plazas at 555 or 560 Mission are "negative". They open directly to the sidewalk and invite people in. That's the problem with space totally surrounded (or mostly surrounded) by buildings, especially residential buildings where you don't live--it feels to me like invading somebody else's space except it's rare that many of the somebody elses use it. My condo building has a large second floor courtyard where the swimming pool and spa are and I can't recall but once ever spending any time there in the last decade since I don't use the pool or spa themselves much. It's too cold, cloudy and windy in San Francisco most of the time to just sit on the grass or whatever--there needs to be attractions like retail, cafes, al fresco dining etc to attract people and I'd be surprised if they design such things for these interior spaces (such amenities would also improve the "public open space" at 555/560 Mission by the way).

Looking at that Kenwood design, to me the spaces you are talking about are the architectural equivalent of light wells. They really just exist in order to allow more units in the buildings to have exterior walls with windows (albeit windows that just face other peoples' windows).

I assume one reason for the 6000 seat venue is for rock concerts and other events, some of which are now being held in ATT Park and causing complaints from neighbors. But to my knowledge, the only other venue in the city of that size might be Civic Auditorium which is pretty outdated (even though it was renovated about 10 years ago). The Opera House seats about 3000 I think and Davies is a bit smaller. I would think we do need something intermediate between those spaces and something huge like ATT Park.

let me first respond with a quote from 'a pattern language' (pg 311):
Quote:

a town needs a public square; they are the largest, most public rooms, that the town has. but when they are too large, they look and feel deserted.

it is natural that every public street will swell out at those important nodes where there is most activity....

...for some reason there is a temptation to make these public squares too large. time and time again in modern cities, architects and planners build plazas that are too large. they look good on drawings; but in real life they end up desolate and dead.
this is exactly why i like and dislike the giants proposal. they include the public park area, but will ppl really be on the lawn area of that size? the book says that plazas should not be wider than 70 ft, tho they can be much longer than that. i have a feeling since its out of the way of most of mission bay, it will appear deserted.

about negative space, im not saying literally completely negative, perhaps sheltered is a better word. especially in sf, being out in the open gives a person the feeling of vulnerability and exposure, rather than a sheltered space, which just feels safe (especially when u see a bunch of other people acting, u know, 'normal'). u still want a wide accessible entrance tho, and the place across from 555 does that (as u mentioned when u said 'They open directly to the sidewalk and invite people in.') while the garage rooftop space is a little harder to find since u only see stairs from the street. with some buildings in kenwood, ur right, it seems there is no access from the outside to the inner courtyards, making them as u say 'light-wells'. that i dont like. the other ones have potential. the devil is in the details.

i think a key element is how the buildings in the kenwood proposal interact with the streets. its not entirely clear how the retail would look, which im presuming would be at the base of some of the buildings. perhaps its only on the outer edges? also, the massing it rather poor, with tall buildings far apart from each other, giving it a slight "project" look. the giants proposal has a skyline that is more like a 'mound' (sf city planning dept buzzword), which looks better (to me at least).

its almost like i wanna fuse the best parts of both proposals together to create a uber-proposal that will be what this parcel really deserves. and of the two of them, yea, the giants are closer to that perfection. but like u alluded to yesterday, this will go to the highest bidder.

twinpeaks Apr 7, 2008 5:21 PM

Quote:

Originally Posted by northbay420 (Post 3467747)
let me first respond with a quote from 'a pattern language' (pg 311):


this is exactly why i like and dislike the giants proposal. they include the public park area, but will ppl really be on the lawn area of that size? the book says that plazas should not be wider than 70 ft, tho they can be much longer than that. i have a feeling since its out of the way of most of mission bay, it will appear deserted.

Any park by the waterfront would be great addition to the city. Just look at Chicago.

SFView Apr 7, 2008 7:14 PM

I think the waterfront park in the Giants proposal can be a slighty warmer version of Crissy Field. It would also have superb views. I would love it.

Crissy Field seems to be well liked as well by people and pets (see link below). It's large, but not so "dead and desolate" as the Pattern Language book says. Much of it also depends on location, and this one at Mission Bay in the Giants proposal seems excellent.

http://www.yelp.com/biz/crissy-field-san-francisco

c1tyguy Apr 9, 2008 3:07 AM

The Development Of Seawall Lot 337: Rankings After Round One
 
Quote:

http://www.socketsite.com/swl%20337%...20Overview.jpg

The Port's advisory panel’s round one ranking (from high to low) of the four proposals to develop San Francisco’s Seawall Lot 337: Kenwood Investments, San Francisco Giants, Build Inc, Federal Development.

The review panel praised the layout of the Kenwood project, saying it evoked a San Francisco neighborhood feel. But the panel expressed concern that the scheme failed to make the most of the waterfront and questioned the feasibility of creating an artists community.


The panel lauded the Giants' plan for its emphasis on open space and recreation. It questioned the design's large number of retail and entertainment venues.

The Build Inc. proposal appears to be at risk of not moving on to round two while the proposal by Federal Development will most likely be left behind.
Source: SocketSite http://www.socketsite.com/archives/2....html#comments

northbay Apr 9, 2008 4:08 PM

^ that pix looks like there might be a pedestrian pathway that goes thru the buildings parallel to the waterfront, connecting the courtyards

now if they did that with retail, that would be sick

roadwarrior Apr 9, 2008 7:13 PM

Although I also preferred the Giants proposal, I would take any proposal at this point, if it meant development of the area over the next 2-3 years. I think that the economic slowdown and the halt to many city developments is a much larger issue than the aesthetic variance between proposals.

livin' in the city Apr 9, 2008 7:16 PM

With the Kenwood proposal I think of the dense mid rise developments that have already gone up around AT and T park, think King, 3rd, etc. which offer no more than wider than usual sidewalks as their urban footprint. This piece of urban planning and it's location at the waters edge is far to valuable to be wasted on more BLOCKS of mid rise housing. I think of the energy and excitment the combination of the LIVE theater/Staples center have brought to LA. Why couldn't we do something here with a much needed venue to replace the soon to be demolished COW PALACE and the dreary CIVIC AUDT. I like the way that part of the potential theater curtain wall is open to the views of the BAY BRIDGE, AT and T, and SOMA. Watch out for KENWOOD which is owned by Derius Anderson who has strong political ties to WILLIE BROWN among others.

AndrewK Apr 9, 2008 10:54 PM

why do you SHOUT periodically in your writing?

c1tyguy Apr 10, 2008 12:00 AM

Quote:

Originally Posted by AndrewK (Post 3474076)
why do you SHOUT periodically in your writing?

To place emphasis, OBVIOUSLY.

viewguysf Apr 10, 2008 2:40 AM

Quote:

Originally Posted by roadwarrior (Post 3473475)
Although I also preferred the Giants proposal, I would take any proposal at this point, if it meant development of the area over the next 2-3 years. I think that the economic slowdown and the halt to many city developments is a much larger issue than the aesthetic variance between proposals.

To me, development just for development's sake is twisted logic, similar to that which inflicted this city with so much bad architecture previously. I'd much rather see that land sit exactly as it is now until something stunning can be built that is appropriate to that prominent site. Why do some of you want to sell us short?

livin' in the city Apr 10, 2008 5:54 AM

SORRY.... just my 2nd post and I am a little excited.

BTinSF Apr 10, 2008 6:24 AM

^^^From my point of view, you're doin' just fine. ;)

roadwarrior Apr 10, 2008 4:50 PM

Quote:

Originally Posted by viewguysf (Post 3474553)
To me, development just for development's sake is twisted logic, similar to that which inflicted this city with so much bad architecture previously. I'd much rather see that land sit exactly as it is now until something stunning can be built that is appropriate to that prominent site. Why do some of you want to sell us short?

Oh, I'm all for "world-class" development, if we can get it. However, I would take a mediocre development over the status quo (a barren parking lot) anyday. The fact of the matter is regardless of how "world-class" this lot ends up becoming, it is sure to attract a lot of potential buyers, who will inject more money and add to a critical mass of that area. It is sure to improve the neighborhood, whether the buildings are mediocre or not. I would hope that the powers that be change their mind and approve the more aesthetically pleasing development. However, I'd rather see something get pushed through than this get cancelled and remain in its current state for a few years. As a Rincon Hill resident, I am acutely aware of the fact that we should've already had the Bryant Street Pier project completed by this time. That would've added a lot to the neighborhood and while a scaled down version might actually be done in a few years, a great deal of time has passed where these piers have sat vacant, unusable and an eyesore to the neighborhood. I would hope we don't have similar delays with this area as well.

BTinSF Apr 10, 2008 5:47 PM

Quote:

Originally Posted by roadwarrior (Post 3475656)
As a Rincon Hill resident, I am acutely aware of the fact that we should've already had the Bryant Street Pier project completed by this time. That would've added a lot to the neighborhood and while a scaled down version might actually be done in a few years, a great deal of time has passed where these piers have sat vacant, unusable and an eyesore to the neighborhood.

To emphasize what you probably already know, the Bryant pier (30-32) remains undeveloped because it is r-o-t-t-e-n and no developer wants to have to have to add the 9 figure cost of repairing it to the already high cost of building anything in SF. I posted the latest scheme @ http://forum.skyscraperpage.com/show...=24868&page=70 but I personally doubt anything will ever be built on that pier: "The new plan still would feature a state-of-the-art cruise ship terminal at Pier 27. But the office development used to pay for the terminal would instead shift south to Piers 30-32. A public recreation center - which at one time included a YMCA and a marine sports basin - would disappear altogether."

roadwarrior Apr 10, 2008 7:42 PM

Quote:

Originally Posted by BTinSF (Post 3475756)
To emphasize what you probably already know, the Bryant pier (30-32) remains undeveloped because it is r-o-t-t-e-n and no developer wants to have to have to add the 9 figure cost of repairing it to the already high cost of building anything in SF. I posted the latest scheme @ http://forum.skyscraperpage.com/show...=24868&page=70 but I personally doubt anything will ever be built on that pier: "The new plan still would feature a state-of-the-art cruise ship terminal at Pier 27. But the office development used to pay for the terminal would instead shift south to Piers 30-32. A public recreation center - which at one time included a YMCA and a marine sports basin - would disappear altogether."

Right, I used the analogy to emphasize a similar wasted use of land by lack of development, not similar circumstances in keeping the land vacant.

SFView Apr 11, 2008 5:10 PM

Giants Plan - 'More Tourists Than Neighbors'
 
From: http://www.examiner.com/a-1322206~Gi...t_project.html
Quote:

Giants make the cut for waterfront project
Apr 5, 2008 3:00 AM (6 days ago) by Tamara Barak Aparton, The Examiner

http://www.examiner.com/images/newsr...29C067D6C1.jpg
(Courtesy graphic)
A plan by Boston Properties and Kenwood Investment, above, is in the lead for the waterfront project.

SAN FRANCISCO - The San Francisco Giants are trailing by a few points in a contest to decide who will create a billion-dollar development project on the port land behind the baseball team’s stadium.

The Port wants to develop the lot south of AT&T Park, called Seawall Lot 337, to generate revenue for the cash-strapped agency. Four development teams submitted proposals for the 16-acre parcel in February. On Tuesday, the recommendations of an eight-member advisory panel will be presented to the Port Commission.

The panel, which noted that all four projects were estimated to cost approximately $1 billion, picked two of the four teams to go on to the final phase of competition. Leading slightly is a plan by Boston Properties and Kenwood Investment, which pitched a proposal that aims to establish an arts district and provide affordable studio space for artists. It also includes two tall office towers and a tall residential building.

“We’re pleased to be selected and look forward to competing in the process. It’s an opportunity for San Francisco to develop a wonderful site along the waterfront,” said Jay Wallace, a partner in Kenwood Investment.

The plan scored an 83.1 out of a possible 100 points in the panel’s grading system, which is based on everything from open space to economic stability. The Giants’ plan to create a waterfront park and mixed-use development on the site trailed just slightly with 81.5 points.

Giants Senior Vice President Larry Baer said the baseball franchise would spend the next several months getting public input on the plan.

“This is a concept plan and we expect to work with the community on the proposal to make it even stronger,” he said.


The panel also pointed out potential problems with each plan. While the Kenwood proposal creates a “vital, active pedestrian-friendly urban neighborhood,” it fell short in terms of open space and raised questions about how artist housing could be managed over the long-term.

The Giants’ plan, while commended for its use of open space, raised concern over the focus on retail and entertainment, which could result in more of a draw for tourists than for neighbors, according to the report.

A team led by Cherokee Investment Partners came in third due its lack of experience with large-scale development projects, while a team led by Federal Development finished last because none of its similar projects had been completed, according to the report.

tbarak@examiner.com

c1tyguy Apr 11, 2008 5:42 PM

^
Quote:

The Giants’ plan, while commended for its use of open space, raised concern over the focus on retail and entertainment, which could result in more of a draw for tourists than for neighbors, according to the report.
Is this a bad thing?! As long as we get PEOPLE to use the space, its doing its job.

SFView Apr 11, 2008 8:57 PM

Perhaps they don't want so many non-neighbor outsiders like me coming to spend a great time and loving it there, smothering the neighborhood. Something more subtle and resembling a quieter San Francisco neighborhood appears to be more desired. I probably wouldn't visit Kenwoods scheme of Mission Bay even 1/4 or less as often as I might the Giants'. Maybe if the Giants reduce the amount of entertainment and retail (among the things I like) with their plan, they may still have a chance.

twinpeaks Apr 11, 2008 9:16 PM

Quote:

Originally Posted by SFView (Post 3478931)
Perhaps they don't want so many non-neighbor outsiders like me coming to spend a great time and loving it there, smothering the neighborhood. Something more subtle and resembling a quieter San Francisco neighborhood appears to be more desired. I probably wouldn't visit Kenwoods scheme of Mission Bay even 1/4 or less as often as I might the Giants'. Maybe if the Giants reduce the amount of entertainment and retail (among the things I like) with their plan, they may still have a chance.

This is the waterfront. It should be a public place and not just for NIMBYs.

SFView Apr 12, 2008 3:23 AM

It will still be public, but just not so much a tourist playground.


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