August 10, 2012

This Week In Noe Valley: Indie Rocker Digs Noe, Whining Moms, And A Town Square Update

News from, about and for Noe Valley from around the interwebs:
[Photo: @CasaMurriguez]


Anonymous said...

I don't get the "save noe valley town square" when the square doesn't even exist yet.

What exactly are we saving?

Call me a horrible skeptic, but I don't think that they are going to make their financial goal with these minimal "pledges". Pledges are not real money.

I don't think the square will happen, unless they get one big tech billionaire to cough up the ENTIRE rest of the needed money.

murphstahoe said...

And the other anon called *me* mean spirited??? ;)

Anonymous said...

I see nothing mean in that comment, merely an opinion of how the money raising is going; and it's not very much money toward the goal of almost $2.8 million.

I believe the deadline is end of this year?

Noe Valley has what? about 18,000 residents?

Where is the financial support from all of them?

I think the commenter is being realistic, not saying the town square is a bad thing. Read again.

murphstahoe said...

There is probably more than a nugget of truth in there, and I too find the rallying cry a bit ironic, but it's not necessarily productive... Todd spends a lot of time on this and even if the quest is a bit quiotix, he could use a pat on the back rather than a slap in the face?

Anonymous said...

There was no slap in face to anyone. No ones name was even mentioned.

I even called my self a "horrible skeptic".

But the fact remains, this fundraising for the potential future town square is not moving particularly fast, nor growing exponentially with cash. I doubt they will meet the goal of about $2.8m relying just on small donations from our locals. Not gonna happen. But what could happen is the high end tech folks, some of whom live in NV, could pony up all the money without even batting an eye.

Why is that not happening?

And in all fairness, the NV Ministry has a legitimate reason for making a deadline to get their money out of the land; they need to rebuild their facility and very soon.

Now, I don't call these comments mean at all.

Anonymous said...

I am a supporter of the Town Square- but have heard some of the same concerns expressed by anonymous. The cost for this open space, to be primarily for use by a Farmers Market, seems high. The Farmers Market could be relocated and still be part of the community. Had the Town Square space been defined for other specific neighborhood uses, it might have gathered more substantial support. Having said that, I hope that the people working hard succeed in finding large benefactors who might need a tax deduction. The alternative, a condo building with boring retails spaces, is not what I want.

murphstahoe said...

Anon @2:13 - as usual it took a few posts on the fancy internet machine but I think we're on the same page.

I think you overestimate how much money they "high end tech folks" really have. If someone nails it for $10 million, they're on the hook for a good 40% of that in taxes and a big chunk of that money will be sheltered. Then buy a house in Noe Valley and unless you think you are going to hit yet another startup, financing a town square is pretty much 100% of your discretionary money. If you had a solid retirement nest egg sitting in your pocket at 35, would you donate it to a neighborhood square?

And not many of those people you see taking the buses nailed it for $10 million. Most of them in fact are just highly compensated people who are nonetheless paying 30/40/50 percent of their income for housing. If I cashed out $10 million I certainly wouldn't be sitting on one of those buses on 101 every day for the privilege of living in Noe Valley.

The only *real* big hitter in Noe was @ev, and he's moving to Parnassus. In theory anyway.

There is probably more money made from in Noe from owning "rental stock in Noe Valley" than there is owning "high tech stock". Maybe a couple of the local landlords who own 4 houses in the neighborhood can sell one of them and bequeath us a town square?

Anonymous said...

Sorry, murph, but I really don't agree with you. You came up with a lot of "oh poor me" excuses for the wealthy tech people. some of whom live in Noe, some not. Seems like you actually have proven to me (us) that the tech wealthy cannot afford to be an "angel" and chip in the remainder to make the town square a reality. There are more than just a few who live here in Noe or the city who could pitch in. Try Zuck, for one. Sure he doesn't live here but he could do far more with his billions than just save them.

I'm sorry to come across as negative, but not my intention. I really don't think the town square is going to happen. The cost really far exceeds the local effort.

When the deadline comes, the NV ministry will make their decisions. I respect whatever they choose, including the right to sell to a for-profit developer. That's how the free market system works.

If we end up with a condo building and retail, I certainly want it to be of high design and construction quality.

I wish the NV town square people the best, but I have my doubts about their success. And just for the record, even though I will remain anonymous, I did not pledge any money, nor will I toward the square.

murphstahoe said...

If Zuckerberg took 2 million of his money to buy a park for Noe instead of a less wealthy area, he would be a laughingstock - rightfully so.

Anonymous said...

Regarding the town square costs, has anyone asked each of the vendors at the farmer's market to pledge a significant amount? After all, these for profit businesses enjoy the benefits of a public open space.

Also, if the town square does not happen (and I doubt it will), what about using the model of the Village Fest that occurs every thursday nite in downtown Palm Springs. A major portion of Palm Canyon is closed off for a few hours and an incredible community market happens, full of people, vendors,art work, food. Amazing event.

What about the same appproach for Noe V; close of a portion of 24th for JUST a few hours on Saturday morning, between Church and Sanchez. Traffic can be easily re-routed temporarily. This could be a great event and still allow the farmers market to happen.

Anonymous said...

I love the idea of closing off the street for a Farmer's market for a few hours, SLO does it on Thursday night with barbeque and acoustical music, it is great fun. Or heaven forbid, close off Noe between Jersey and 24th, the flattest, least impacted, street for a FM once a week?

Anonymous said...

Noe between Jersey and 24th is hardly flat.

Anonymous said...

I agree that we should just close a portion of 24th Street for a few hours every week for the Farmer's Market, just like they do in the Castro, NOPA, & every other neighborhood in SF.

I know everyone has very good intentions with trying to raise $4 million for a Town Square, but has anyone done a community needs assessment yet? It seems with the large number of parks and parklets in a very small radius, other than to serve the Farmer's Market the neighborhood might not actually need another public gathering space? What if we spend $4M here and people still congregate at the Martha's parklet or Douglass Playground and the Town Square is totally under-used? Perhaps not, but it seems that a bit more research needs to be done before such a significant investment is made. That's why the trial Plaza was a good idea- the neighborhood could test it out to see if it works for 3-6 months before actually spending any money on it. Same should go for the Town Square, IMHO.

Also, for those criticizing the "Save the Town Square" slogan-- it is quite a brilliant bit of marketing and someone should be applauded.

Anonymous said...

I agree completely with the idea of closing off a portion of 24th St. JUST on Saturday for a few hours, perhaps just between Vicksburg and Sanchez. That would serve the market well.

I do not agree that the so called "trial plaza" would have added any validation to a permanent town square. The trial plaza idea was wrong from the start which would have resulted in a longer term closing of an important NV st. And let's be real: most residents didn't want it.

I also agree that the attempted raising of almost $4m for the town square is a weak idea, with very little support, or money coming in. There was no needs assessment done, just a group of enthusiastic volunteers who decided "we need a town square" with little forethought.

And now we find out that the fundraisers will not be at the Farmers Market for a few weeks, due to being on vacation.

So much for dedication and enthusiasm. The town square will not happen.

murphstahoe said...

I would wager a large sum of money that if the town square doesn't happen, there will be a weekly farmers market in the street right on that block, and it will be wildly popular. And the condos that get built on the NVM lot will sell for megabucks. And First Republic will move into the newly created retail underneath them ;)

Anonymous said...

The sarcasm above is evident. It always is.

But if not, I know the farmers market will survive just fine without the $2.7m town square for them (and others). NV will also survive.

And yes, as I said much earlier on, the temp street closure for a farmers market would work out just great.

The new condos and retail space will be a welcome addition to 24th St.