Sunday, May 10, 2009

Sunday Streets Recap

I spent Mothers Day with my own mother on Third Street in this year's Bayview Sunday Streets. There may have been fewer people at this event than last month's Embarcadero closure, but not by much. The route was longer and the weather was perfect.

The businesses along Third Street set a very different tone for this month's event than the last. Many merchants offered special promotions or publicity programs, adding a level of engagement that was not so present on the Northern waterfront.

It was also a great excuse to see the construction progress in Mission Bay. The streets still haven't reached a level of connectivity that makes it easy to explore, and the oversize scale of the buildings makes it somewhat overwhelming. But mandates for public art in and around the straight-outta-Santa Clara commercial buildings provide some fun discoveries.

The segment along Dogpatch is layered in history. The old shipyard awaits restoration and redevelopment across from brand new apartments, which are already occupied.

I still don't understand why the route turned off of Third Street ad Islais Creek. The two events last year used this same route, and there were clear problems with the abandoned tracks along Illinois Street. Third is not especially heavily traveled between Islais and Mission creeks, and Illinois is a very wide road. Cars could easily be diverted onto Illinois if the capacity of Third was a concern.

There will be four more Sunday Streets events this year - one per month until September.

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