February Meeting Recap: Documentary Highlights Plight Faced by Parkmerced Residents

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By Bruce Wolfe, HANC President

At February’s membership meeting, we were graced with Nick Pasquariello’s beautiful video documentary on the Parkmerced apartment complex and community. He gave a wide ranging overview of the environs with an exquisite history and examples of the varying lifestyles given by various residents and advocates.


Development Watch: 650 Divisadero and One Oak Street

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By Rupert Clayton, HANC Board Member

As major developments that will affect Haight Ashbury residents continue to roll through the planning process, HANC and other neighborhood groups are working to ensure they meet residents’ needs.

On Jan 26, the Planning Commission agreed to postpone its hearing on the proposed 66-apartment project at 650 Divisadero, under pressure from neighbors and local groups. You may remember that this site on the southeast corner of Divis and Grove was originally planned for 16 units but grew to 66 after Supervisor Breed pushed through upzoning of the Divisadero and Fillmore corridors in 2015.

Despite this huge increase in size, the proposal will only provide 9 affordable units (13.5%). After residents and neighborhood groups in the Affordable Divisadero coalition worked together to create the Divisadero Community Plan, Supervisor Breed agreed to increase the required percentage of affordable units along these streets. That legislation has sat on the supervisor’s desk for six months; neighbors are asking that approval of the development is postponed until the Board votes on the revised plan.


2016 HANC Year In Review

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By Richard Ivanhoe, HANC Board

            As we all know too well, 2016 was an election year. HANC’s May, September, and October meetings discussed the upcoming June and November elections, and “How the Haight-Ashbury Voted” was reported in the July Voice and at the December meeting. HANC also submitted a ballot argument opposing Proposition Q (banning tents). Although not all of HANC’s endorsements won at the polls Citywide, District 5 voters followed our recommendations in the November election.

We, of course, paid attention to our neighborhood—the Panhandle (May and August Voice, September and December meetings, appearance at September Party for the Parks), Haight Street (January, February, and July Voice), Masonic (July and September Voice) and Kezar Stadium (March Voice). We reported on a new group for Haight-Ashbury Seniors in the August Voice. 


Haight Ashbury Seniors "Creatively Aging" Together

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By Christin Evans, HANC Board

In October, the Haight Ashbury Seniors Group held their fourth meeting at the Park Branch library community room. Scheduled for 6pm every 3rd Tuesday, the group led by longtime resident Cosi Fabian has been targeting all local seniors “aging in place.”

With an estimated 3000 seniors living in the 94117 zip code, and yet no Senior Center with activities targeting the partially- or fully-retired, the group has already organized a number of activities including lectures, crafts & games, and exercise classes starting with a weekly Monday morning yoga meetup.

Ron Jones, a professional storyteller, both entertained and educated the group at the last meeting on the variety of forms that a well-crafted story might take. At the group’s November 15th meeting Haight-Ashbury resident and New York Times bestselling author Laura Fraser will give a brief lecture on writing a memoir. Visit the Park Branch Library’s website for additional details.

Newsom / Lee Shown Wrong Again on Closing Neighborhood Recycling Centers

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By Calvin Welch, HANC Board

The Newsom/Lee administration had two "talking points" in the 2010-2012 saga of the closing of the recycling center at Kezar:

One, that the recycling center was responsible for homeless people being in our neighborhood, as, in the immortal words of C.W. Nevius, they used it as their "ATM" and, like everybody, ole CW knows, if you remove their ATM's you remove them, right?

And two, that the recycling center was no longer needed, that the City is meeting it recycling goals, and that Recology's curb side pick-up rendered the Center's drop-off service some hippie-dippie holdover, outmoded by changed conditions.

While HANC argued the fallacy of both arguments at the time-that homelessness had nothing to do with recycling, and that in a heavily tenanted neighborhood like the Haight-Ashbury, thousands of tenants do not have access to the three bins--the Mayor's ally, the Chronicle had the "big megaphone" and our arguments were not heard.

But reality is persistent and mocks mere "talking points."


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