February 28, 2011

This Week At The Planning Commission

A weekly look at Noe Valley projects in front of the Planning Commission. Information is provided by the Planning Commission, and taken from its published agenda. All hearings are on Thursday at 1:30pm, Room 400 in City Hall.

422 DAY STREET - north side between Castro and Noe Streets; Lot 009 in Assessor's Block 6630 - Staff Initiated Request for Discretionary Review of Building Permit Application No. 2010.09.14.0807 proposing to construct a one-story vertical addition to the existing two-story, single-family dwelling resulting in a three-story, single-family dwelling in an RH-1 (Residential House, One-Family) District and a 40-X Height and Bulk District.
Staff Analysis: Full Discretionary Review

Preliminary Recommendation: Take Discretionary Review and approve with modifications.
Planning Staff's Full Analysis (PDF) includes site details, 17 letters of support from neighbors and architectural drawings of the proposed project.

[SF Planning: 422 Day St]
[Photos: SF Planning]

February 25, 2011

Crime Beat

Information is from Mission and Ingleside District San Francisco Police Station newsletters.

First...a meeting notice:
Please circle March 29 on your calendar. That is the date of the next Mission Station-hosted community meeting. We hope to have a representative from the City’s Department of Public Works make a presentation and answer questions. We will definitely supply mouth-watering refreshments and a door prize for which I have spared no expense.
Meeting to be held from 6-7pm at 630 Valencia St. And now...the juicy bits:
February 18

Theft/Building -- 9:30 am 30th/Chenery. Officers Toomey and Gamboa were sent to investigate a theft incident. The victim told the officers that while at work he left for a meeting. The victim locked his office door. The victim was gone for an hour and upon his return he noticed that his office door could not be open with the keys. The victim contacted a locksmith. Once in his office the victim noticed that his wallet and contents were missing. There is no suspect description.

February 19

Attempted Robbery -- 11:22 p.m. 24th & Douglass. The robber confronted three people and demanded their cell phone. One of the victims offered her cell phone, but the scoundrel refused it because it was old-fashioned. He then drew a gun and demanded all their property. When told by another of the victims that what he was doing was wrong, the gunman turned around and walked away.

Theft from Auto -- 3:35 pm. Noe/Day. Officers Park and Chang were sent to investigate a theft case. The witness told the officers that she observed a subject jump into a car via the window. The witness told the officers that she walked by the car and saw a suspect in the passenger seat rummaging through the glove box. The witness crossed the street and called the police. the suspect then got out of the car and got into a waiting car and fled the area.

February 20

Battery -- 2:30 p.m. Clipper & Diamond. The suspect punched both victims.

February 21

Burglary -- 7:00 a.m. 3800 24th St. The victim’s store was broken into, and a sum of money was stolen.

Vandalism -- 3:31 am 30th/Church. Officers Ma and Padilla were sent to investigate a vandalism case. The caller told the officers that he observed 4 suspects writing on a wall. The officers searched the area for possible suspects and located four subjects and detain them. Since there was no victim and no one to identify the suspects, they were all identified and sent on their way. The information was sent to the graffiti unit.

February 23

Malicious Mischief -- 9:06 p.m. 24th & Noe. A vile vandal broke the window of the victim’s truck.

February 24

Warrant Arrest -- 1:34 pm Valley/Castro. Officers Rueca and Almaguer responded to locate two suspects that had outstanding warrants. The officers arrived to a location where the suspects frequent and knocked on the door. The door opened and it was one of the suspects. The officers placed him under arrest and asked him if there was anyone else with him. The suspect answered by saying my girlfriend, can we tell her I’m going to jail? The offices complied; little did the suspect know that the officers knew that his girlfriend was the other suspect with the warrant! Both suspects were pronounced under arrested on their respective warrants.

Trespassing -- 11:12 am 200 blk 30th St. Officer Curry was sent to investigate a trespasser. The victim told the officer that there was a person on the property that did not have permission to be there. When the suspect realized that the victim was calling police he fled. The officer searched the area and could not find the suspect.

Noe Valley NERT: It's Not Too Late

Vicki Rosen, President of Upper Noe Neighbors, would like you to know that NERT training is still available even if you missed last night's class:
Last night's first of six NERT classes in Upper Noe was terrific. I want to thank everyone who showed up and encourage everyone else that you can still attend. Even if you miss some of the classes, you can make them up by attending at another location...then you still get certified.

If we want the Upper Noe Recreation Center to be an official NERT gathering/resource location, we will need at least 40 people to get certified. However, it has also been recommended to us by other Noe Valley NERTs that we consider pulling all Noe Valley resources together and have one centralized location. We'll be looking at all our options and figure out what makes the most sense.

The next class is Thursday, March 3, 6:30-9:30 pm at the Upper Noe Recreation Center, Day & Sanchez. We'll continue to meet every Thursday night through March 31.
[NVSF: Sign Up! NERT In Noe Valley]

Call For Photos: The Great Blizzard Of 2011

If the Polar Express actually dumps spritzes snow on San Francisco, please send your photos of Noe Valley buried in the fluffy soggy pow pow. Extra points for iconic Noe Valley landmarks (St Paul's, Toast, double-wide strollers).

[NWS: San Francisco Forecast]

February 21, 2011

Big Night: Noe Valley Nursery Fundraiser

A parent from Noe Valley Nursery School writes:

Noe Valley Nursery’s School annual fundraising event, Big Night will take place at the Verdi Club (2424 Mariposa Street) on February 26th from 6-10pm. This fabulous evening will include a silent auction, raffle prizes, gourmet hors d’oeuvres, a hosted bar and dancing to the jumping rhythms of Stompy Jones. Tickets are only $25 and will sell out fast, so get yours today at www.noevalleynurseryschool.com.

Click the poster image for more details about the adults-only benefit.

February 20, 2011

Open: Two Birds Boutique

The nest is ready and the new women's clothing store, Two Birds, opened today in the old Cook's Boulevard space. The roomy two-level store specializes in upscale fashion and expensive jeans. If you like what you've seen at Lola, Two Birds will be another welcome stop on that stretch of Castro.

Two Birds
1309 Castro @ 24th St.

[NVSF: Announced: Two Birds Boutique in Former Cooks Boulevard Space]

February 16, 2011

Noe 8th Grader: Reduce Crime, Root for the Giants

The Chronicle has a fun story about an 8-year-old's science project at Noe Valley's St. Philip School:

A budding young Nancy Drew at Noe Valley's St. Philip School has come up with this finding based on her research for a science fair: Thefts of cars and auto break-ins went down in San Francisco last fall while the Giants were marching their way through the playoffs to their World Series crown.

Eighth-grader Ella Chatfield-Stiehler went on the city Police Department's computerized crime data site, crunched comparisons of October 2009 and October 2010 and found that car thefts and auto burglaries dipped significantly last year when the hometown baseball heroes were doing their thong-panda-beard thing.

Not clear if there's a real link, but it's a great theory. It's also not clear if the crime dip extended to the raucous full day ticker parade on Nov. 3 (above right). But in the words of Ella: "This study also supports another reason to say, Go Giants!"

[SF Gate: Crime fell during Giants' title run, eighth-grader finds]

Noe Valley Town Square: Concepts

While the process to secure funding for the Noe Valley Town Square is in flux, the design phase is in full swing. CMG Landscape Architecture presented four concepts at the February 2nd Community Meeting. The images in this post are from that presentation, but we've been asked to emphasize that "it is very important to note that the schemes are to be thought of as menus of choices not as complete packages." CMG asks that you read the PDF presentation for contextual descriptions of each scheme. For instance, Alternative 4 (above) is pitched like this:
The “Not so Square ” concept provides continuous garden edge around a generous, active and flexible square. The defining aspects of the concept are the curvilinear edges that define the square and series of pavilion structures including a restroom located in the northeast corner, a community wall and seating area located on the west edge, and stage backdrop and seating area located in the southeast corner. The stage backdrop and pavilion structure would provide lighting and infrastructure for community movie nights as well as power and lighting for a portable stage. The garden is framed by a variety of sculptural seating areas and elements to create an inviting space for daily use and informal play. A children’s play room is located in the east garden area. The garden area would be planted with a variety of flowering native plants to provide seasonal variety and butterfly habitat. An informal arrangement of tree’s would provide a buffer to residential yards along the back edge of the square. The paving pattern is designed to provide a variety of textures colors.

The concept also includes the option of an interactive water feature with small bubble jets built into the paving surface. The water feature could be activated by children and turned off to maintain flexibility for events.
The PDF also illustrates how Farmer's Market stalls would fit in the design. If for some reason you are unable to read the PDF, send us a note and we'll forward it to your email. The other concepts are in JPG form below.

[CMG: Noe Valley Town Square (PDF)]

February 15, 2011

Upper Noe Neighbors: Scott Wiener, Feb 17

Got something to ask District 8 Supervisor Scott Wiener? He'll be at the Upper Noe Neighbors community meeting Thursday night.

Via Vicki Rosen:
We'll have Supervisor Scott Wiener at our Upper Noe Neighbors meeting on Thursday, February 17, 7:30 pm at the Upper Noe Rec Center (Day & Sanchez). Please come and welcome him and join in a conversation about what's important to our neighborhood. It will be interesting to hear how his first month and a half in office has been!

We'll also provide information on the NERT (Neighborhood Emergency Response Team) training agendas, which start Feb. 24.

If you go, send us notes or post reactions in the comments.

[Image: Scott Wiener on Twitter]

February 14, 2011

Noe Valley Garden Tour 2011: Nominations Wanted

Never mind the rain, Noe trees are budding and Spring is on the way. A reader writes:
The Noe Valley Garden Tour 2011 is set for Sat., May 21 from 10 am to 3 pm. Gardens for the tour are being selected now. If you would like to nominate your garden or the garden of a friend, please contact Richard May. Gardens must have direct access from the street and be within Noe Valley boundaries: 30th St. on the south, Guerrero on the east, Noe [Ed.--21st St?] on the north and Market/Diamond Heights Blvd. on the west. Gardens will be selected by the Garden Tour committee by February 28.

Proceeds will go to a beautification project in Noe Valley. Access to the completed project must be open to the public. If you’d like to nominate a project, contact Richard. The selection of the project will be made by the Friends of Noe Valley Executive Board. The Noe Valley Garden Tour is produced by the Friends of Noe Valley.

February 5, 2011

NVV February 2011: We Read It So You Don't Have To

The Noe Valley Voice is published ten times a year and has been a neighborhood fixture since 1977. Here are highlights from the latest issue. Links are to items we've covered here on NVSF or outside sources as the Voice doesn't post stories online until mid-month.

February 2011

Front Page: New school district lines for Noe; RelayRides neighborhood car share comes to Noe; 7 local retailers served with warning letters threatening lawsuits from ADA activists and forced to make costly upgrades (much employment for lawyers ensues).

Letters: Unclaimed Santa photos still languishing at Just for Fun - stop by if you forgot to pick yours up; details on a broken window car break-in that didn't make it into the Police Beat.

Message from Scott Wiener:
Our new District 8 Supe writes of his 2 priorities: Fixing the J Church and the Noe Valley Town Square.

Features: Profile of Sharon who sells Street Sheet on 24th St.; new luxe condos on outer Church.

Cost of Living in Noe: Condos outsold homes in November and December with the typical price for a condo at $1 million. Single-family homes are averaging $1.4 million.

Short Takes: Neighborhood Emergency Response Training (NERT) coming to Noe Feb 24 - Mar 31; Find a Lab to Love at Noe Valley Pet Co. Feb 12, 12 - 3pm; Plant*SF wants to green your sidewalk.

Store Trek: Tataki South; Patxi's; New Alternatives Cafe - 1600 Guerrero at 28th serves coffee, pastries and sandwiches daily.

Rumors: Noe Valley's Super Bowl celebrity Larry Jacobson frequents Le Zinc, Tuggey's, Firefly and Pasta Pomodoro (and misses Noe Valley Pizza); world-class sculptor and Noe Valley resident Ruth Asawa is the subject of a documentary - next showing is at the De Young on March 11; parklets are popular on 24th Street - smoking is not; reason for recent Circle Bank demonstrations in Noe still unclear (contractor and union dispute); Lola staying, Two Birds coming soon; diagonal parking comes to Castro and nets 3 new parking spots (Ed - or 4 at night when confused drivers park diagonally in the parallel spot anyway); the $2.33 million Noe Dream House and the $4.25 million Noe Fire House still not sold.

[The Noe Valley Voice]

February 3, 2011

Town Square: Big On Dreams, Short On Cash

Last night's community meeting about a possible Town Square on 24th St offered few new details about little things like financing, process and what it will take to make the Noe Valley Town Square actually happen. And while we were ready to write it off, reader CR's report almost made us optimistic:
I went to the town square meeting tonight -- sucker for punishment, I guess. Here's the scoop:

* Meredith at the Neighborhood Parks Council starts off. The city hasn't used the open space money for decades because Parks & Rec can't maintain parks. Now they have this public-private idea in Noe but it's been so long since they acquired land they don't know how to do it right. When they started talking about this project, the neighborhoods that have been on hold for years were all 'Hey what about us, you said there was no money.' 17th & Folsom is farther along, has outside grant money, and has been in line for a while. Other projects too. So that's the hang-up. Meredith seems cool. She wants the city to be smart about things. She wants other projects to go forward and doesn't want Noe Valley to get caught in the political crossfire. So NPC is working with Parks & Rec and the Open Space Committee to "clean out cobwebs," see if policies need to be revised, and figure out which projects should go forward.

* Four designs are presented and we discuss for an hour. They're all good designs, variations on a theme: a large open flexible paved (or permeable) space; small green spaces (trees/garden/landforms) in various configurations; benches along the sides; large furniture in the middle that can be moved by the farmer's market; small play area for toddlers; good visibility and openness to the street and tree buffer against the back wall; possible sidewalk extension into the parking lane. One small bathroom (only for market and special events) and storage shed. Curb cuts for vehicle access to set up special events. Lighting and power. Three out of four designs allow the Farmer's Market to stay the same size or expand; one causes them to lose 6 tents, which is a non-starter. The architects have ignored the silly stuff from the first meeting. There will be no electronic fences or gates, and no underground parking lot, but there is still the possibility of a "flexible space where someone could bring a half pipe every weekend for Skater Sundays." Designs will be presented online so people can comment.

* Supervisor Scott Wiener is there and stays the whole meeting. Scott notes the problems at the city level -- says it will be "a heavy lift," he's "the eternal optimist" but he thinks we have a "hard road ahead" over the next "several years." Noe Valley needs to raise some serious money. Glad we spent the last hour talking about these pretty pictures!

* Todd David shows up late, wants to table all questions about fundraising until the city can figure out its process. At this point he doesn't know if we will need $300,000 to buy some benches and set up a maintenance budget, or if we need $3 million to cover construction and part of the land acquisition. They are exploring the possibility of a bundled proposal where Noe Valley might team up with other communities to put forward projects together.

* The Farmer's Market wants to know: How long can the Ministry wait for us to get our act together?

* The Ministry says: We got a loan from Circle Bank with the parking lot as collateral and we're going to start construction without waiting on all y'all. We need to see things starting to come together in the next 12 months.

* Next step: Todd, Meredith, et al., meet with the city to get a clearer picture of the process. Could take a few months. Not years. Meanwhile, the landscape architect takes in the community feedback and moves from four designs to one design so we have a better sense of the construction budget.
We've asked CMG Landscape Architecture for renderings and more info - details when we get them.

[NVSF: All Town Square Posts]