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Damn The Bay

April 1, 2010

I’ve posted too many times on the myriad plans for bridging and tunnelling San Francisco Bay.  But Eric Fischer has scanned much darker plans for covering over the Bay.

The red is proposed fill. “Hey, let’s dam off the South Bay with a 2000 foot wide berm between SF and Oakland.”

This plan was pushed by John Reber in 1945. He proposed creating two massive freshwater lakes in addition to the new real estate.

There’s no denying that lots of San Francisco is built on “made land” — the Marina, North Beach, SOMA, the Mission, Dogpatch, Treasure Island. But these mid-century plans take it to a whole new level.

More detail is at the UC Berkeley’s Bridging The Bay site.

I do love this Christmas card the Reber’s sent out.  What jaunty signs! That completely justifies the wanton environmental destruction.

(via UC Berkeley)

The US Army Corp of Engineers took the plan seriously enough to build a 1.5 acre hydraulic model of the Bay to test it.


(via army.arch)

An understatement from the Reber plan Wikipedia page: “The barriers, which were the plan’s essential element, failed to survive this critical study.” Rather shocking, given Reber’s background as “an actor, theatrical producer, and schoolteacher”.

The Bay Model in Saulsalito is full of actual water. Before you rush over to see it as I just about did, realize they just got some Obamadollars and are closed until Memorial Day weekend for upgrades. Which is good, outside my desire for immediate gratification to see something made to rebut a crackpot plan.

Now I know what you’re thinking — “Why have barriers so far back in the Bay?  Clearly the answer is to build a barrier around Treasure Island itself!” Fret not, as Mr. Savage’s plan had your back:


(via Eric Fischer)

Glad they are thinking of the fishes too.

Taking it even further, why not connect Treasure Island with Angel Island? Oh, but Mr. Dennison’s way ahead of you.


(via Eric Fischer)

Andrew C. Swanson had yet another plan to fill the Bay — he wanted to level San Bruno Mountain…

“…this barrier which otherwise would continue to plague San Francisco and the Peninsula FOREVER. Also, eliminating this barrier would provide more land for homes, cemeteries, and rapid transit facilities; and it would remove the ever-present hazard of plane crashes against this mountain.”


(via UC Berkeley)

(San Bruno Mountain *is* kind of a pain in the ass, especially since the San Bruno Curve will significantly slow down our glorious high speed rail.)

All these plans kind of makes a second BART tube and a 30th St Station seem reasonable, no?

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15 Comments leave one →
  1. April 1, 2010 11:13 am

    And of course I now discover that the fine Mr. Sparkletack did a podcast on the Reber Plan back in 2006.

  2. April 1, 2010 11:18 am

    Wait… is this an April Fool’s or not?

  3. April 1, 2010 11:30 am

    I’ve always wanted to go to the Bay Model. Do they have a full bar?

    I was totally thinking this was an AFD joke, but I guess satire and reality are hard to tell apart sometimes.

  4. April 1, 2010 11:38 am

    Aawwww, so cute! Silly little Modernity, what were you thinking?

  5. April 1, 2010 11:08 pm

    The “fins” in that last shot remind me of the Palm Jumeirah. A bit ahead of his time.

  6. April 1, 2010 11:40 pm

    Totally. (Except inverted.)

    The whole thing is as if the Dutch and Japanese got together and took over urban planning.

  7. April 3, 2010 2:53 am

    Wanna have some fun? Check out the City of Brisbane phone book. Thing’s smaller than a Twilight paperback, but has this whole amazing history about the battle of using San Bruno Mountain as fill VS the Mission Blue Butterfly, indigenous to San Bruno Mountain.

    (Bonus, there’s old pictures of Brisbane AND the collection of painted fire hydrants in their special garden on Visitacion next to Julie’s Deli)

  8. April 8, 2010 11:29 am

    When I originally commented I clicked the “Notify me when new comments are added” checkbox and now each time a comment is added I get four emails with the same comment.

  9. azaskarban permalink
    April 15, 2010 11:34 am

    Environmental destruction?

    NIMBY!

    Let ‘em do it in China where they’re buildin’ my iPad and chopping the tops off mountains to harvest materials.

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