At a meeting at 5:00 o’clock Wednesday, the San Francisco Board of Permit Appeals denied an appeal by Anastasia Glikshtern that had stopped renovation of the Glen Canyon Rec Center, playground and tennis courts. The vote was four in favor of denying the appeal, zero opposed.
A standing room only crowd filled the room at the 1 Dr. Carlton B. Goodlett Place, Room 416. About 20 people lined up to talk, about half in favor of the stoppage, about half were opposed. Most who opposed the work spoke of concerns about trees being cut down to accommodate it. Those in favor tended to focus on the need for a new playground, rec center and bathrooms
Phil Ginsburg, the director of San Francisco’s Recreation and Park Department, said in email he was “optimistic that we will soon be able to break ground on phase 1 of the Glen Park renovation. Because SF voters passed proposition B with 72% of the vote, we now also have funding for phase 2 — which will allow us to rebuild the recreation center, too.”
Ginsburg said he was especially grateful for the parents who took the time to write letters or come to the meeting. “As a husband and dad in a hectic 2 working parent household with young kids, I am certainly aware of how difficult it is to find time to engage in civic issues and debate, no matter how worthy. We are doing our very best at Rec and Park to represent the interests of working families living in this City.”
The $5.8 million Glen Canyon Park renovation as funded by the 2008 Clean & Safe. Neighborhood Parks Bond. It will include:
* Creation of an Elk Street welcoming entry/plaza and drop-off area, path, and related new landscaping;
* Relocation and expansion of the children’s play area;
* Relocation and reconstruction of the tennis courts;
* New Americans with Disability Act-compliant, exteriorly-accessible restroom within the recreation center, which can be open even when the recreation center is no.
Glikshtern’s last-minute appeal, filed on Oct. 15, called into question the building permit. Work had been scheduled to begin on Tuesday, Oct. 16. In a one-page statement filed with the appeal Glikshtern said she felt that significant trees in the park should not be marginalized and that their destruction was being misrepresented to the public.
The appeal also stated that the drop-off zone in the plan on Elk street and the relocation of the tennis courts is unnecessary and that the money should instead be spent on other failing playground in the city “instead of a grand native plant entrance that only a few people want.”
A lively discussion on the Glen Park Association blog and the Glen Park Parents list on the topic has included multiple parents pushing for the renovation and equally passionate neighbors arguing that the eucalyptus trees that line the path by the tennis will be needlessly cut to make way for a newly placed tennis court.