Ignoring the recommendation of San Francisco’s Historic Preservation Commission, and siding with the recommendation of its Land Use and Economic Development Committee, yesterday San Francisco’s full Board of Supervisors voted 10 to 1 against landmark status for the North Beach Branch Library helping clear the way for the North Beach Library/Joe DiMaggio Playground Master Plan.
With Whom Will San Francisco’s Full Board Of Supervisors Side? [SocketSite]
Split Decision For North Beach Branch Library Landmarking So Far [SocketSite]
Preservation Commission Recommends New North Beach Landmark [SocketSite]
North Beach Library/Joe DiMaggio Playground Master Plan Report [SocketSite]

Comments from Plugged-In Readers

  1. Posted by North Beach Tony

    Could it be…some common sense and pragmatism are creeping into the BoS?
    This is a welcome decision for all of us who live in NB, and hopefully a bellwether for other land use and urban planning issues in SF.
    Wouldn’t bet on it, though.

  2. Posted by sacdomc

    The supes voted 10-1 to get rid of a building that’s more than 20 years old?! There must be a backroom deal to replace this with a new homeless shelter, BMR housing, or something like that.

  3. Posted by lyqwyd

    Woo hoo!

  4. Posted by Wonkster

    This is definitely good news, but I have to believe that the opponents are gearing up for some other avenue to stop this, probably litigation of some sort. No doubt they will dispute the EIR and find some angle to bring a lawsuit. Funny how the wife of the head of the local Democratic Central Committee (sounds rather Soviet to me) is so opposed to actual democracy. I hope the new library is built in my lifetime, but I’m not counting on it.

  5. Posted by A.T.

    10-1? Doesn’t say much about Pesky’s clout with the BOS. Looks like we don’t have to worry about mayor Leprechaun. And the new BOS looks to be a bit of an improvement over the current one.

  6. Posted by Joe

    Who was the 1 who voted to landmark.

  7. Posted by R

    The scary part of this is we’re all shocked and surprised when the BOS actually makes an intelligent decision. We’re so used to their craziness that when they do something that makes sense it throws is for a loop.

  8. Posted by Rincon Hill Billy

    there IS a Santa Claus!

  9. Posted by zzzzzz

    Yes, I’d like to know who was the addled Supe who voted to landmark! Was it Chris Daly?
    [Editor’s Note: That’s a bingo!]

  10. Posted by Joe

    I should have known about CD – the library perfectly echoes the architectural aesthetic of his home city, Fairfield.
    ever the contrarian. I will not be sorry to see him gone.

  11. Posted by noearch

    This is good news! Now maybe we can see a new and functional library for today and the future rise on this spot.

  12. Posted by zzzzzzzz

    I think this incident bespeaks the folly of creating an independent landmarks board. By its very nature the landmarks board will be looking for business and looking to landmark dubious structures like the North Beach library. Look for this sort of incident to repeat itself, again and again.

  13. Posted by EH

    zzzz does point out an interesting case of perverse incentive here.

  14. Posted by phil

    Sweet! When is the groundbreaking?

  15. Posted by Wai Yip Tung

    David Chiu’s comment on its bid for landmark status
    “I think that cheapens the historical landmark designation for the other buildings that do have merit,”
    Good call. David Chiu for mayor!

  16. Posted by sfrenegade

    “David Chiu for mayor!”
    I had assumed that was a foregone conclusion with The Gavin moving on.

  17. Posted by citicritter

    So, although I agree the existing library in no way merits landmark status protection, does no one care that the new proposal also seems so banal/mediocre (at least in the rendering made public – see SocketSite a couple days ago)?
    Just because the old library can be removed doesn’t mean the new one shouldn’t be as good as possible design-wise, does it? This seems like the perfect kind of project to have a design competition for (either open or invited).

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