On Monday, May 6, EAG held is quarterly community wide meeting at our office on 35 San Juan Avenue. We were joined by over 40 community members who came to hear updates about our projects and offer their feedback on our work, particularly surrounding the Persia Triangle Project. If you missed the meeting, here's a snapshot of the updates that were presented that evening. Click here to view photos from the meeting.
The Ever Upward Project is progressing rapidly. The project was designed in a community design workshop at the May Quarterly meeting in 2012. One year later, the Excelsior's first piece of civic art is getting ready for construction. The designs are complete and all necessary approvals and permits have been received. We are working with the support of dozens of community volunteers to create the mosaics for the column piece by piece. We need all the help we can get on that! If you're interested in participating, please email firstname.lastname@example.org. The sculpture is slated for installation at the northwest corner of Geneva and Mission this Fall 2013.
EAG is working with the Excelsior Branch Library, Architecture for Humanity, and 5 local artists to install seating and greening, as well as art panels at our local library, 4400 Mission Street. The project has been in development since February 2012. It is currently in the permitting and approvals process. We aim to begin construction in Summer of 2013 and have it open for community use by Fall of 2013. During the summer, the project will be constructed during Community Build Days with the help of local volunteers. We need your help to bring this project to fruition! Please email email@example.com if you're interested in helping out or contributing to the Build Day efforts.
In January 2012, the Excelsior Action Group was approached by Supervisor Avalos to retrofit and activate a blighted news kiosk at the corner of Geneva & Mission. EAG has taken on this project and is investigating the feasibility of relocating the kiosk to a more beneficial and centrally-located site at the Persia Triangle. After the kiosk is retrofitted, EAG hopes to activate it on a more regular basis with local vendors, a community map, information postings from community-based organizations, and artwork.
On Saturday, February 16, 2013, the Excelsior Action Group (EAG) executed a grassroots safety program with the help of over a dozen local youth in San Francisco’s Excelsior neighborhood. Shine a Bright Light on Excelsior is a pedestrian level lighting campaign that enlists youth as safety liaisons to distribute free energy efficient lighting to small businesses to brighten their storefront windows at night. Generously funded by PG&E, the program addresses the neighborhood’s dire need for pedestrian level lighting to increase safety and foot traffic on Mission Street after dark. EAG continues to advocate for a permanent solution to this issue.
Since December 2012, several businesses on the Excelsior Commercial Corridor have been sued by plaintiffs with disabilities because they are not up to ADA standards and do not provide equal access to patrons with disabilities. EAG has spearheaded a robust outreach and education campaign to both improve the accessibility of businesses in the Excelsior neighborhood and also help protect these businesses from ADA litigation. Outreach for this campaign has been conducted door-to-door in English, Spanish, and Cantonese. In addition, EAG hosted an ADA workshop for Cantonese-speaking business owners in March, which was very well-attended and informative. Finally, EAG is managing an ADA Compliance Inspection program, funded by the Office of Economic and Workforce Development, which provide free inspections of local businesses.
The 11th Annual Excelsior Art & Music Festival will be held this September 29, 2013 in conjunction with Sunday Streets. The Excelsior Action Group's Festival Committee is currently planning the event and can always use extra support and ideas. This year's theme is "Forever Upward" and all proceeds raised from the event will go toward a maintenance endowment for the Ever Upward sculpture. If you want to get involved with festival planning, join us at the Festival Committee's next meeting, Thursday June 6, 6:00 PM at EAG's office, 35 San Juan Avenue. We are also happy to announce that Sunday Streets will be returning to the Excelsior in tandem with the Festival and will be shutting down Mission Street again this year for their event. The quarterly meeting in August will have many more updates and information about how to get involved with the Festival.
EAG was joined by representatives from the SF Planning Department, MTA, DPW, and Out of Site to present updates on all of the short-term improvements occurring at the Persia Triangle. EAG's project at this site include the Persia Triangle Community Market pilot project (funded), the potential installation of the Community Kiosk at Ocean and Mission (pending), and a collaboration with Out of Site to install street furniture and sidewalk artwork (pending). Planning Department is spearheading the creation of plazas to allow additional space for pedestrian safety and community gathering. MTA is managing proposed changes to bus routes through the site and the additional of bus bulbs. DPW will be repaving the street surfaces in the early part of next year.