Thursday, December 16, 2010

Gearing up for 2011

While most people are busy worrying about what they're going to be doing come 11:59pm on December 31st, the folks over at 7x7 are already looking forward to what is going to be happening in 2011. From their website, here are the things we should all be 'getting ready for'. I've made my notes in red:

1. Ghirardelli Square

Though the businesses in the Square are in foreclosure, Gary Danko asserts he’s still going to open his long-awaited American brasserie.

*No one actually ever willingly goes to Ghirardelli Square, unless they are entertaining newbies to the City or really, really fuckin' bored - so this one strikes out.

2. Pier 35

Get ready for the tourists: San Francisco port officials predict a 39 percent increase in the number of cruise ships docking in the city this year.

*Again, who gives a shit. Pier 35, Pier 39? It's like Happy Gilmore's Gold Jacket/Green Jacket debate. NOTE: The video is of terribly horrible quality.

3. Golden Gate Park/Ocean Beach.

For the first time in history, Bay to Breakers will ban alcohol from the race, making it much harder to lower your inhibitions and run naked.

*This one is something that is actually on everyone's minds. For as long as I can remember the NIMBYs along the course have been trying to "ban alcohol", something that was supposedly in effect for at least the last two years...yeah, if you were there you know how well that worked out. As one of the quintessential San Francisco events (actually hitting 100 years in 2011) it's sad to see the level with which the ridiculousness from both sides of the event have gotten. The folks who come out here, having no ties to the City at all and destroy it vs. the folks who live along the route and can't allow a 100 year old tradition to continue without busting everyone's balls - one that only interrupts the neighborhood one day/year. Anyway, it'll be interesting to see what kind of enforcement they're able to pull together. Something more than the previous few years? Non-registered "runners" not allowed on the course? Like most everything else in the land of NIMBYism, only time will tell.

4. Hayes Valley

PROXY—a rotating, temporary group of boutiques, art galleries,
and mini-restaurants housed in shipping containers designed by SF-based Envelope
Architecture & Design—will take over two empty lots.

*Umm, cool?

5. Mid-Market

CityPlace value retail mall will break ground as part of the city’s ongoing attempt to make Market Street more inviting.

*Another issue that has been talked about for years. I wouldn't mind seeing mid- market cleaned up a bit; if only to get some viable storefronts back out there. The crackhead/homeless population is a whole 'nother issue, but one that may get some attention if business owners are willing to work proactively with the police force in an effort to keep the area sustainable and more inviting to, not only tourists, but folks who actually live in the surrounding 'hoods.

6. Bay Bridge

By the spring, the engineering marvel that is the new Bay Bridge’s self-anchored suspension tower will finally be erected, making for a stunning East Bay commute. (Just don’t drive off the bridge while watching this take place.)

*Oh, you mean that whole bridge thing that is costing us $1.43 billion? Yeah? Oh, that's cool. Wait, what's that? It's not scheduled to actually open 'til 2013? Awesome. Why is this "stunning" again?

7. Dolores Park

Renovation begins on Dolores Park. Relax, hipsters: Work isn't scheduled to start until June at the earliest and will be done in stages. There’ll still be lots of room for Hula-Hooping.

*Waaaah, wahhhhhhh. In what looks like the folks at 7x7 were trying to be funny, it's actually a pretty big deal. As one of the City's premier parks, it's not only one of the warmest places in the City, it's also one of the few places you can actually convince a group of people to meet at. Starting in JUNE? Come on, really? The busiest time of the year? Well played, city planners. Well played...

8. Mission

More good news for jazz lovers: Preservation Hall will open its second branch in the old New College Building (which used to be a mortuary), bringing a little New Orleans flavor to the heart of the Mission.

*Cool. I s'pose. One less morgue and one more music venue works for me.

9. SoMa

Borders Books, RIP. In its stead, Lucky Strike Lanes is slated to open on King Street, bringing SoCal-style bowling (loungey, lowlit, cocktails in hand) to NoCal.

*Borders is going the way of Old Yeller anyhow, what with handling everything they have - and more. So fuck it. Better than trying to throw another big container store in its place. In fact, I'm down to see a stylish little bowling alley pop up in it's place. Something that doesn't have me driving all the way out to the Presidio in order to knock some pins down, have a beer and play some arcades, is fine by me. Although, anything "SoCal Style" is always a bit of a warning sign for me. Again, we'll have to wait and see.

10. Mission Bay

More new developments on Third Street. Construction will begin on the UCSF Medical Center at Mission Bay, a LEED gold–certified hospital spread over 14.5 acres that will focus on the care of women, children, and cancer patients.

*Women, children and cancer patients? Sounds like fodder for Family Guy, but I won't touch that with a ten foot pole. Or did I just do that?

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