Short Cuts

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10 Townsend

At a December 2021 San Francisco Municipal Transportation Agency meeting the #10 Townsend bus was tentatively approved to partially return this Spring. The revised route will run from San Francisco General Hospital to Sansome and Montgomery in the Financial District. Plans include relocating the Potrero Hill stop from 17th Street to 16th Street to enable buses to utilize newly installed transit lanes.  The #10 is intended to run at pre-pandemic frequency. Some Hill residents weren’t pleased with the outcome. “It’s a shorter route, which is a shame,” said Sarah Wilcox. “Since service stopped, I’ve either taken my car or changed my plans, and I worry that’s how it will be once it resumes.” For more information,

300 De Haro

The 120-foot high, 450-unit project proposed for 300 De Haro was entitled by the San Francisco Planning Department last month. Under the State Density Bonus and Senate Bill 35 DM Development’s structure is allowed to exceed the zoned height of 68 feet. All residences will be micro-sized – less than 300 square feet – except a single larger home, included most likely to enable the developer to skirt a prohibition on single room occupancy units at the site. Permit applications have been submitted to the Department of Building Inspection. 


Dogpatch Paddle won its bid to occupy Building 49 in Crane Cove Park, in partnership with YMCA of San Francisco, which’ll operate an onsite fitness center, and Daily Driver, vending coffee, bagels, and the like. The consortium is negotiating lease details with the San Francisco Port, with renovation likely to start nowish…J.R. Eppler, Potrero Boosters president, has been appointed to the Building Inspection Commission. The seven-member Commission manages the Department of Building Inspection, responsible for ensuring effective, efficient, fair and safe enforcement of municipal building, housing, plumbing, electrical, and mechanical codes, as well as disability access regulations… One wonders what kind of say it’ll have over the 300 DeHaro Street project. According to Jennifer Serwer, of Hibiscus Studios, a landscape design and place making company, small nonprofits dedicated to community revitalization projects are facing significant hurdles in their quests to secure funding from the City and Country of San Francisco’s Community Challenge Grant and other sources. In particular, matching requirements make it hard to compete with larger organizations that have an established donor network and large base of volunteers…After 25-years, BAVC Media, a nonprofit media resource that serves more than 7,500 freelancers, filmmakers, job seekers, activists, and artists annually, is moving from 2727 Mariposa Street to the 9th Street Independent Film Center near Civic Center…Last month, the 18th and Rhode Island Permaculture Garden was vandalized, with tree branches destroyed and plants pulled up. Pointless, much?

Art Strike

In what’d be the first strike at a private arts college since 2012, the latest in a number of higher education walkouts, 97 percent of California College of the Arts’ (CCA) staff voted to call a strike if the institution’s administration doesn’t “put an immediate stop to violations of labor law and bargain in good faith,” according to Jennie Smith-Camejo of SEIU Local 1021. Three-quarters of the college’s workforce, including studio managers, admissions officers, and librarians, voted to join SEIU 1021 in 2019, several years after adjunct professors had already done so. However, staff still don’t have a contract.  “When we started the bargaining process in October 2019, CCA administration said they wanted to settle a contract within a few months. It’s clear that was a lie,” said CCA Film Studio Manager Brian Woods, a bargaining team member. “They stall and do everything in their power to keep us from a fair contract. They continue making presentations on boilerplate minutia. They haven’t responded to any of our economic proposals, which are our top priority. There’s not even an acknowledgment that we’ve even submitted these–there’s been no response at all.” Negotiations between management and labor continue this month.

Profitable Bankruptcy

Graph: PG&E Net Income and Return on Ratebase 1994-2020

Based on 1994 to 2020 Federal Energy Regulatory Commission data, Pacific Gas and Electric Company suffered a large loss in 2000, but it recovered all of it over the next four years (see above graph). The monopoly utility apparently can’t lose, though its customers surely can. 

Scam I Am

The calls come in insistently, one after another until you answer.  “This is Amazon, with a possible fraud alert. Did you recently purchase an iPhone 11? Press one if no, two if yes.” Pressing one immediately gets you transferred, “Amazon?” questions a voice, the sounds of a call center in the background. “Are you reporting a fraudulent charge?” Answering yes gets you quickly transferred again, to a voice that sympathetically murmurs about the inconvenience, and then asks for your credit card number “to confirm any charges.”  And thus the trap is sprung.  More clever than repetitive calls about an expired warranty, less blunt than threats of the sheriff knocking on your door if you don’t immediately pay outstanding taxes.  Don’t fall for it.

West Side Story

Steven Spielberg’s remake of West Side Story reinvigorates the original’s insights into sociological seismic faults that continue to this day:  the perceived displacement by brown people, or women, or whoever, of white men who grew up with mothers who “are junkies” and “…fathers all are drunks,” as Riff sings in “Gee, Officer Krupke;” whether America is largely a place of cage-fight capitalism or simply better than anywhere else, as sung in “America;” and the deep need to belong to something, anything, even if it’s a dysfunctional gang that leads nowhere but death.  For those who were touched by the 1961 film, the new one will both bring back memories of a time when a knife was the most serious weapon one might confront in a playground. Seen in a post-Covid theater, however, with masked people not so discreetly checking their phones, bumping their neighbor’s elbow, and muttering to one another is a reminder that the Big Screen has lost a significant amount of its luster, another faultline foreseen in the movie. How do we live together, publicly, as all around us things are being torn down?  “Some day, Somewhere, We’ll find a new way of living, We’ll find a way of forgiving…”.

Book Ban

Texas State Representative Matt Krause identified a list of 850 books, including The Confessions of Nat Turner by William Styron and works by Ta-Nehisi Coates and Margaret Atwood, as potentially containing obscene content from which young minds should be shielded.  One wonders if Krause knows about the Internet.  If teenagers can be lured away from Instagram and Snapchat, much less easy access to online pornography, into a library to read a book – any book – we should all sigh with relief. Graphic novels, Victorian-era porno, popup books, please kids, have at it.