Livability Awards – June 1!

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Please join Livable City for our annual Livability Awards on June 1 from 6 to 9 p.m. at Public Works SF in the Mission. This event is an opportunity for Livable City to recognize innovators, advocates, and public servants for their leadership and accomplishments and celebrate with our amazing members and friends. Enjoy an open bar, […]

Converting garages in San Francisco

Réveille Coffee, at 4076 18th Street in the Castro, opened in a former garage space. Livable City helped author the ordinance that allowed this garage conversion.

In a city where housing is increasingly scarce and expensive, and where commercial rents are skyrocketing, converting garage spaces to new housing and storefronts can help make space for residents and neighborhood-serving small businesses. Converting garages can also improve neighborhood livability by restoring front gardens, green backyards, pedestrian-friendly front porches, storefronts, and building lobbies, street trees, and even […]

SF expands Priority Conservation Areas

On April 21, the San Francisco Board of Supervisors approved the designation of five Priority Conservation Areas (PCAs) in San Francisco. Priority Conservation Areas are Bay Area open spaces that “provide regionally significant agricultural, natural resource, scenic, recreational, and/or ecological values and ecosystem functions; are in urgent need of protection due to pressure from urban development or […]

Our Greenway Network action plan for 2015

The San Miguel Hills are San Francisco's central range of hills, and includes Twin Peaks, Mt Sutro, Mt. Davidson, Glen Canyon, and Laguna Honda. This zoning map shows the extent of publicly-owned lands (in gray, marked "P") that could form an interconnected public open space network.

Livable City’s Greenway Network campaign is creating a linked-up open space system for San Francisco of landscaped boulevards, green streets, and linear parks which link the city’s neighborhoods to one another, and to our major parks, wildlife corridors, waterfront, and public transit hubs. The Network will serve as sustainable transportation infrastructure (walking, bicycling, and public transit), and provide stormwater infiltration and […]

New accessory dwelling units could be allowed in more SF neighborhoods

Livable City has long championed legalizing the addition of new apartments, known as accessory dwelling units or in-law units, to existing buildings. As we explained back in December: Adding housing to existing buildings is great way to add housing to neighborhoods while preserving their character and history. Adding housing to existing buildings is greener – the energy […]

“Unaccepted” Townsend Street is unacceptable

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San Francisco has about 850 miles of streets, in 12,500 street segments, covering about a quarter of San Francisco’s land area. 2,224 of those street segments are “unaccepted streets” – streets that are not maintained by SF’s Department of Public Works. Over half of those streets are paved, but often one or more features – sidewalks, […]

Reclaiming San Francisco’s alleyways

Public rights-of-way – streets and alleyways – make up about a quarter of San Francisco’s land area. Projects that reclaim alleyways as neighborhood-serving public places with greening, traffic-calming, and pedestrianization are moving forward in 2015. Living Alleys, also known as woonerfs, are shared space alleyways that prioritize pedestrian use and open space, using special paving, traffic calming, lighting, seating, green landscaping, and […]

2014 in review: Complete Streets and Greenways

2014 saw progress towards complete streets and a greenway network for San Francisco – and also showed that the city’s projects and practices are still falling far short of its standards, policies, and goals. Vision Zero Vision Zero – the goal of eliminating traffic deaths within a decade – made progress in 2014. Various city agencies adopted […]

The future of Downtown’s Public Spaces

As San Francisco’s Downtown gets denser, and increasingly mixed-use – housing, retail, hotels, entertainment, and cultural institutions along with offices – it needs better public amenities – better streets, greenery, and usable and appealing public open spaces. The Downtown Plan, adopted in 1985, emerged from the ‘Planning Wars’ of the late 1970s and early 1980s. The Downtown Plan’s intent […]

Transit Victories of 2014

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In 2014, San Francisco and Alameda County voters strongly affirmed their support for transit, walking, and cycling. In San Francisco, Prop L, a policy measure which sought to undermine the City’s transit-first policy, traffic calming, and innovative parking management programs, was resoundingly defeated in the November election. Proposition A, a $500 million bond for transit priority projects and […]