Author Archive

July 10 2013

Steven Chang: A Farewell and Thank You to The Grid

July 10th, 2013Posted by 

Six months ago I started writing for The Grid with the plan to sharpen my research, analysis, and communication of urban issues through regular, journalistic blog posts. That certainly did happen, but there was far more than I anticipated. I found many opportunities to reference my own articles when speaking with colleagues in my workplace. […]

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June 26 2013

San Francisco Brings Good Luck and Cultural Awareness to Central Subway Project

June 26th, 2013Posted by 

To construct San Francisco’s Central Subway Project, TBMs, or tunnel boring machines, were brought into downtown to bore a 1.5-mile tunnel between SoMa and Chinatown. But before any boring began, the TBMs had to be named. According to tunneling tradition, naming TBMs brings good luck to tunneling project. Sensing an opportunity, the San Francisco Municipal […]

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June 12 2013

SFPark Program Puts Parking Theory to the Test

June 12th, 2013Posted by 

What’s the longest it’s ever taken you to find parking in an urban environment like San Francisco? If you’ve ever driven in the city, you’re probably familiar with the frustrating (and dangerous) experience of circling city blocks to find an open space. You’re not alone. In 2007, Donald Shoup, professor of urban planning at UCLA, […]

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May 29 2013

Transbay Transit Center: San Francisco Builds a Visionary Transportation Hub

May 29th, 2013Posted by 

If you’ve ever taken Bay Area public transit, you’ll know that there are many options for traveling within and between cities. There are also many options for traveling to different parts of California from the Bay Area using public transit. But one of the biggest challenges facing public transit is the issue of intermodal passenger […]

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May 15 2013

San Francisco Establishes Affordable Housing Fund

May 15th, 2013Posted by 

In November 2012, San Francisco voters passed Proposition C, establishing a city-wide affordable housing fund on the enormous margin of 31%.  And it couldn’t have come at a better time. In February 2012, Governor Brown of California, in an effort to slash the state budget, ordered the dissolution of all California Redevelopment Agencies. From an […]

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May 01 2013

BART’s Oakland Airport Connector Finally Nears Completion

May 1st, 2013Posted by 

After nearly 40 years of discussion and planning, the connection between BART (Bay Area Rapid Transit) and the Oakland Airport is finally nearing completion. Like most transportation infrastructure projects (especially those in the Bay Area) this 3.2-mile, $484.1 million connector faced numerous obstacles, delays, and controversy even after construction broke ground in October 2011. Those […]

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April 17 2013

The San Francisco Bay Bridge Gets a New Look

April 17th, 2013Posted by 

In 1989, the Loma Prieta Earthquake shook the Bay Area at a 6.9 magnitude, breaking a segment of the East Bay Span of the Bay Bridge. Further analysis revealed extensive damage along the 75-year old bridge, and a recommendation was made to build a new East Bay Span. However, East Bay residents didn’t want just […]

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April 03 2013

New Stadium Raises Questions for San Francisco’s Waterfront

April 3rd, 2013Posted by 

For San Franciscans, the imminent departure of the 49ers (a National Football League team founded in San Francisco in 1946) to Santa Clara, California this year is an enormous disappointment. In addition to enjoying a storied and successful history in San Francisco, the 49ers advanced to the Superbowl (the NFL championship game) in the 2012-2013 […]

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March 20 2013

San Francisco Supervisor Wiener Tackles Environmental Laws, CEQA

March 20th, 2013Posted by 

The California Environmental Quality Act (CEQA) has been the subject of much debate among developers, architects, engineers, public agencies, and activist groups since it was passed back in 1970. CEQA does not set environmental sustainability standards; rather, it requires that developers undergo specific analytic procedures to identify the environmental impact of their projects and adopt […]

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March 06 2013

Economic Development, Place, and Identity: Apple Lands a “Spaceship” in the Heart of Silicon Valley

March 6th, 2013Posted by 

Anyone who has ever been to an Apple, Inc. store knows that the company’s branding and marketing go beyond its products – it spills into the company’s architecture. The glass façade and minimalist furniture prominently featuring glowing electronics are an unmistakable stamp of Apple’s spatial branding. So what, if you could imagine, would the headquarters […]

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February 20 2013

Energy Production & Safety: Explosions at the Richmond, California Chevron Refinery

February 20th, 2013Posted by 

Everyday, urban residents around the world use energy without giving much thought as to where it comes from, how it is produced, and how safe it is to produce it. But on January 31, 2013, a series of explosions at the Richmond Chevron Refinery in Richmond, California raised important urban planning questions regarding the location […]

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February 06 2013

HUB SoMa: A Place-Based Business Incubator in San Francisco, California

February 6th, 2013Posted by 

If you were a tiny, web-based start up in need of physical space and a support structure to nurture your business, what sort of things would you look for? Last year, for 6 months of 2012, I interned at the award-winning international charity website UniversalGivingTM, which operated from a business incubation site named HUB SoMa […]

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January 23 2013

Follow This: Twitter Brings Investors & Developers to Mid-Market San Francisco

January 23rd, 2013Posted by 

After decades of disinvestment and decline, Mid-Market Street in downtown San Francisco seems to be finally headed toward revitalization. Plywood has come off vacant storefronts, sidewalks are filled with pedestrians headed to work, and loud sounds of construction serve as an unfamiliar soundtrack for the historically troubled neighborhood. How did this happen? It’s fairly clear […]

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