What if 280 came down


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What if 280 came down? Intro PPT for first meeting of Pacific Cities Sustainability Initiative team on July 1 2013.

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What if 280 came down

  1. 1. What if 280 came down? Design competition presented by the Center for Architecture and Design and the Seed Fund and co-sponsored by SF Planning, AIA SF, Studio for Urban Projects, SPUR, and the Architectural Foundation of SF.
  2. 2. What is the Pacific Cities Sustainability Initiative? www.asiasociety.org/PCSI The Pacific Cities Sustainability Initiative (PCSI) is a collaborative dialogue which aims to foster long-term sharing of urban sustainability strategies between communities across the Pacific Rim. Launched in 2009 to address the challenges related to rapid urbanization in the Asia-Pacific region, the initiative is now a partnership of Asia Society and Urban Land Institute with support from leading academic organizations. PCSI's guiding principles are to showcase and share solutions that emphasize livability for urban citizens and that ensure today's and tomorrow's cities are designed, built, and governed around the needs of all its inhabitants. We envision this project as both a networking opportunity and a chance to examine how San Francisco can become a more livable and resilient city.
  3. 3. What if 280 came down? Competition overview. “In Spring 2013, Mayor Ed Lee announced an exploration of the potential of removing Highway 280 north of 16th Street in San Francisco. Submit your ideas for new possibilities for what lies beneath Highway 280.” Competition participants are invited to submit concepts for public art, buildings, landscape treatments, public amenities and infrastructure, or other urban design interventions that are made possible through the replacement of the elevated Highway 280 north of 16th Street with a surface boulevard. Suggested areas of focus are the parcels of land freed up by this transformation, especially along the western edge of Mission Bay, as well as the open space/landscape opportunities at the west end of Mission Creek to unify both sides of the creek. Entrants are welcome to submit concepts that explore any aspect of the transformative opportunities introduced by the freeway removal.
  4. 4. What if 280 came down? Competition details. • Entrants are asked to submit project plans for either ONE or ALL of the Land Parcels indicated on the Site Map. • Entry due July 31, 2013 by 1 PM. • Emily has already registered the team • Final package includes: • 50-word summary should be approximately two sentences on the project. Copy should be clear, concise and well written. • 1-page summary should fully outline the program and design objectives and how the project addressed these objectives. Please indicate the Land Parcel(s) on which your project focuses. • Site Plan (JPEG format): Show context and include North arrow. • Images (JPEG format): Up to 8 images of the project. Images can be represented through renderings, drawings, CAD files, photos or any other medium that indicate the texture of the project. Artwork should be saved to a MINIMUM size of 8”x10” as JPGs at 300 dpi CMYK. • Design Team Form (Microsoft Excel File): This is for office use only.
  5. 5. Background on the site Currently, the stub end of Interstate 280 creates a barrier between the developing Mission Bay neighborhood and Potrero Hill. At the same time, the Caltrain railyard — 19 acres stretching from Fourth Street to Seventh Street between King and Townsend — forms a barrier between Mission Bay and SoMa. The obstruction will only get worse if current plans for high-speed rail proceed, forcing 16th Street and Mission Bay Boulevard into depressed trenches beneath the tracks and the elevated freeway. This competition is based on idea that this part of San Francisco can be transformed while also generating funding for several key regionally important transit projects — namely, the electrification of Caltrain, the extension of Caltrain into the Transbay Terminal and as well as putting high-speed rail underground, as opposed to having it travel at street level through Potrero Hill and Mission Bay, which would require crossing streets to go below grade. From the competition website
  6. 6. Snapshot of the area in question with the 6 land parcels identified. http://media.aiasf.org/uploads/files/280_Site_Map.pdf
  7. 7. HSR authority proposal for Mission Bay Blvd (looping) Via SPUR – HSR rendering of 16th ST in trench under HSR
  8. 8. History of the area Mission Bay has a fascinating history. It used to be a real bay – shallow and filled with oysters and other wetland life. Shipbuilding, fishing, clamming were the mainstays, followed by butchers and then railyards. Mission Creek was used to dump refuse. From about 1860-1910, sand dunes and other fill were used to slowly fill in the bay (from further north in the city). Garbage dumps and earthquake fill from 1906 filled much of the remainder. Mission Creek as it pours into Mission Bay was drawn in the 1870s. Long Bridge crosses the mouth of Mission Bay, roughly where 3rd Street runs today. Image: Library of Congress. Info quoted from FoundSF.org
  9. 9. History of the area…continued. From 1910 until today, much of Mission Bay was railyards and industrial use – like canneries and sewage treatment plants. Mission Creek today is just part of a complex network of natural waterways that once flowed through and under San Francisco. Water history map from Oakland Museum of CA: pink is landfill, blue are creeks, and turqoise represents wetlands (historical)
  10. 10. The area today and the challenges • A community of people live in houseboats in Mission Creek • Caltrain railyard takes up three city blocks and blocks access between SoMa and Mission Bay • Peds, bikes, and vehicles can’t cross between 4th and Mission Bay Blvd • Caltrain plans eletrification and new electric trains; TransBay Transit Center will extend Caltrain – but both initiatives are not yet fully funded. • High Speed Rail project is under development • Pedstrian improvements and parks/open spaces are needed, and the neighborhoods need to be connected to each other and to transit. • The area is seismically unsafe (remember the fill?) • Parts of the area today are being developed at a fast pace – UCSF’s new biomedical campus is being built. People have expressed concerns that some of the last open space in San Francisco is being developed into a “suburban-like” isolated yet expensive island of medical and academic facilities, offices, and unaffordable new condo developments, which will not be connected to surrounding neighborhoods. Photo of mission creek houseboats by dylan bigby Mission Creek today is still a valuable wildlife refuge and is less polluted than it once was. Photo by Ginny Stearns
  11. 11. Highway removal in urban areas: inspiration. Cheonggyecheon stream todayCheonggyecheon “stream” in Seoul is an elevated highway (1970s) -stream was polluted and channelized (like LA today). Was seen as symbol of poverty and filth, like an open sewer with shanties along its banks. In the early 2000s, the stream was restored, the highway removed (and partially replaced by a BRT system), and a popular public space.
  12. 12. Cheongyecheon today – inspiration.
  13. 13. Highway removal in the US: inspiration Overall benefits: • Reduce vehicle miles traveled (improve air quality, safer for pedestrians and cyclists; lower carbon emissions) • Reduce noise pollution and “eyesores” in neighborhoods • Catalytic effects (economic development, less crime, more attractive, etc.) • Highway removals projects can be most successful when part of an overall plan with long term goals by the city, neighborhood and society about what they want their city to look like and how it should work. (ie: Vancouver’s “Living First” planExamples in SF include: Embarcadero freeway and the Central Freeway near Octavia (Hayes Valley). • In Hayes Valley, a portion of the central freeway was removed after earthquake damage – a surface level boulevard now links to the 101. Positive benefits included a new park, a redesigned boulevard with bike lanes, street trees, and landscaping (Octavia Blvd), a boom in local businesses and cafes, decreased crime and increased attractiveness to business, space for new housing to be built. Interestingly, overall traffic in the corridor decreased. However, there are still challenges to improving traffic flow and multi- modal use. Old elevated Embarcadero freeway in SF and today’s version…