Similar temporary pedestrian spaces implemented under the city's Pavement to Parks program have been wildly popular in the communities that surround them. But I have to admit I was worried this plaza would become an exception to that experience after a reader left a couple comments indicating the situation in North Beach was bad.
Specifically worrying to me was his assertion
Come by any morning and you'll see a huddle of junkies and alcoholics who have a daily jamboree. -Karl BSince this plaza was between a surface parking lot and a library, and not directly adjacent to cafes or other businesses that could participate in its upkeep, I was a little concerned that the plaza might be run down after only a month.
So I took Mr. B's advice and went down there this morning. Pics after the jump.
Instead of junkies huddling on the asphalt, I saw morning walkers strolling among the sizable potted maple trees. I saw kids playing on the logs that form an outdoor amphitheater for the library. And I saw tourists stopping to snap photos of the space before moving on to the famously crooked part of Lombard, just a couple blocks away.
I saw no evidence to support Karl B's assertion that the temporary closure was a hazard to pedestrians. In fact, I saw quite the opposite.
But he and I don't need to agree to disagree. The temporary closure is part of an ongoing traffic study that will gather empirical data about traffic patterns in that area and reveal any such impacts.
The Mason Street plaza will remain open to pedestrians until September 27th. Go down and see it for yourself if you haven't already.