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Exit Asphalt; Enter A Park

September 8, 2009

guerrero bamboo

Click to zoom:

guerrero park panorama

Brought to you by the San Jose Guerrero Coalition and the city’s Pavement to Parks Program.  (Thanks Gillian and Andres.)

But there’s more to be done.  Donate to help fund the playground equipment and rubber play mats! Click below, or go to the SJGC donation page.


De-Elevating The Mission Freeway

September 5, 2009

Fellow mapologist Eric Fischer took the time to alert me to diagrams from the SF 1948 Transportation Plan for the never-built Mission Freeway that we discussed a few months back.

Prior to the Great Freeway Revolt, traffic planners wanted the highway immediately to the east of Mission St — basically a continuation of the 280/San Jose exit now. It was to run

  • along the foot of Bernal, between Mission and Coleridge
  • from CC/Army to 24th, between Mission and Capp
  • slice diagonally between 24th to 20th
  • between Capp and Van Ness from 20th to 14th

I sliced together the two sections of the map for viewing convenience, click to zoom.  (South is up)

mission freeway plans, 30th to 14th

The Mission would have been cut in two. Think a huge trough like Geary by Fillmore.

The highway was to be at or below grade from 26th to 14th.  15th, 17th, 19th, 23rd, 25th and 26th would have been cut off.  The Bernal section looks to at grade, and Bernal would have been completely cut off from Mission / La Lengua except for Coleman (and Army).   No Zante’s, Baby Blues, La Taqueria, El Faralito, Benders…

High resolution scans are available on his Flickr page including the Mission Section and Bernal Section.

UPDATE:  Eric’s Flickr stream also contains this dramatic rendition of the Mission Highway, looking NE, between Mission and Coleridge, with Cortland coming down Bernal on the right:

mission and cortland

Be sure to check out the many great maps on Eric’s website and his Flickr feed.

Trees, Please

September 4, 2009

Guerrero Beach gets some trees! It’s not even finished and looks awesome. From the new San Jose cul-de-sac:


And across the street at 28th, click to zoom:


Zoom on the fun new trees:

Come down to Guerrero & 28th this Sunday at 10:30 to help paint and plant! Details here via the San Jose Guerrero Coalition.

Excuse Me, I Have A Question

September 4, 2009
tags: ,

New San Jose airport parkade facade.

sjc hands

I look forward to someone removing the disks on the index and ring fingers.

Bright Moon, Light Clouds

September 3, 2009

Trippy clouds last night forced me to play with both iPhoneography and long exposures on my Lumix.

Old Sears building and AAMCO – (three shots stitched together with Panorama on the iPhone):

aamco sears

iPhone of Bernal, bikes, Valencia & CC.

bikes at valencia and cesar chavez

60 second Lumix exposure of my back yard (that’s nothing but moonlight):


60 second exposure of night sky, clouds, and the ridiculously large jade tree in my back yard:


10x zoom on the Lumix, 1/200 shutter, 100 ISO:


I have this cool Soviet Army spy monocular. I held it in front of the Lumix zoomed 10x.  A bitch to align, but pretty decent results:


And I wasn’t the only one shooting last night — Mission Mission points to Drewbot’s great timelapse of the moon dancing through clouds over Guerrero.

Plywood vs Driftwood at Guerrero Park

August 31, 2009

Did you really think plywood was going to take driftwood’s invasion lying down?

plywood vs driftwood

(That, or giant ninjas are throwing rounded rectangles with impressive accuracy.)

Anyway, those are going to be giant planters. This picture and more on the goings-on of Guerrero Beach at SF.Streetsblog.

And come help plant and paint on Sunday! From the San Jose/Guerrero Coalition:

It’s Guerrero Park!

Guerrero Park is the latest Pavement to Parks project of Mayor Gavin Newsom’s Office of Greening, the San Francisco Planning Department, the San Francisco Department of Public Works, and the San Francisco Metropolitan Transportation Agency.

Guerrero Park is a six-month experiment to see if spaces like this can be inexpensively reclaimed from being underused roadways to being vibrant pedestrian neighborhood areas.

Over the next few days, hundreds of plants will be added, along with tables and chairs, and, eventually, a children’s play structure and free wi-fi. Residents will continue to be able to access their driveways, of course, and the parking will remain.

However, we need your help!

1. Volunteer to paint, Sunday September 6th, 10AM to 2PM

Sunday, September 6th, 10am to 2pm, volunteer to paint. We supply paint, brushes, rollers, drinks & snacks. San Jose/Guerrero at 28th Street. Please RSVP to so we can provide enough snacks.

No experience necessary!

2. Send money for trees, plants and landscaping

Like Greening Guerrero, Guerrero Park is a joint project of the city and neighborhood, so we’re once again asking for your financial support  to green your neighborhood.

Park funding to date has been provided by generous donations from the California Pacific Medical Foundation, Safeway and by neighbors.

Help us fund the trees, plants and other landscaping materials in Guerrero Park and on adjacent sidewalks.

Donate electronically via secure credit card transaction through Friends of the Urban Forest here:

or write a check to:

Friends of the Urban Forest
c/o San Jose Guerrero Coalition
4101 24th Street, #130
San Francisco, CA 94110
Make sure you put “Guerrero Park” in the memo line.

3. Use the Park!

Go to the park. Sit there, meet your neighbors there, bring food, a laptop, a child.

If it’s not used, it won’t last!

8-bit Mission

August 31, 2009

We here at the Burrito Justice 8-bit bureau have long focused on the artistic merit of 8-bit 80’s games in the neighborhood. Behold Space Invaders in da Noe:

space invaders tiles

Thus we were rather satisfied to see that biking artists had GPS’d the 8-bit 80s onto Mission streets laid out in the mid 1800s.

space invaders gps

SF Weekly covered this back in May:

With the aid of a GPS — and nary a can of spray paint — San Francisco graphic designer Vicente Montelongo has created a series of bike trails in the city shaped like videogame heroes of yore. What’s his rationale? He tells SF Weekly, “I’m just doing it for the love of 8bit, San Francisco, biking, and the need to create.”

I love this set of hand drawn directions, and the cut through the middle of Dolores park.


(Sadly he missed Shotwell’s but did pass right by Bender’s, hmmm…)

Even the NYT is in on it, publishing this story last week:

Pedaling the rectangular city blocks in San Francisco, Vicente Montelongo, 32, a graphic artist, realized the street layout lent itself to the pixeled shapes of vintage 1980s video game characters like Pac-Man, Q*bert and Donkey Kong. Back home with a printed-out Google map and a pencil, he drew Pac-Man chasing a ghost over in the Sunset District and then set out on his bike, iPhone in tow, GPS mapping application on. After riding 8.6 miles in an unwavering line, he uploaded the GPS track data from his phone, and had his picture.

“It’s a good way to get exercise and see the city,” said Mr. Montelongo, who is working on a series of GPS drawings based on the beloved video games of his youth. “You end up going on these streets that you would never otherwise go down.”



More maps by mexist over at EveryTrail.

1941 SF Panorama, Bridge to Bridge

August 31, 2009

Flickr user marlewis‘ father took many shots of downtown SF in 1941 from the Top of the Mark, from shiny new bridge to shiny new bridge.  I stitched them together into a panorama — click to zoom. Downtown looks sparse. Just wish he had kept shooting to the west and south…

sf 1941 top of mark

(Sorry about the harsh transitions between some of the frames but my blending skillz were limited when dealing with the vignetting especially around the Coit Tower photo.)

Melodramatic Ovaltine rendering:


Original Flickr gallery here with many more shots of SF around the docks and ferries. Thanks to plug1 for pointing them out.

LA Station Fire – Mt Wilson Webcam Timelapse

August 31, 2009

Our friends down in LA are not having a good day. The Station forest fire is approaching the 105-year old Mt. Wilson Observatory along with the dozens of TV and radio antennas on the mountains that overlook the city. (As of 11:45 it was within half a mile.)

The observatory webcam happens to point towards the fire approaching from the west. It takes a shot about every two minutes — here’s a version I made with about three hours of shots (around 70 frames) compressed into 6 seconds. You can see three fires progressing along the hills, one on the right, one on the left, and one in the center that flares up towards the end of the timelapse. (Best to watch it in HD mode on Vimeo itself.)

(If the Vimeo link is borked for some reason, here’s a ridiculously large (30 MB) animated GIF.)

There’s a lot of smoke and it’s hard to tell what’s where. I just found this timelapse of Saturday sunset (via Sky & Telescope) that helps with perspective.

mt wilson 2008.08.29

Here’s quick and dirty blink comparison of Saturday and Sunday which better shows the location of the center fire (I’m guessing the flare at the end is the fire creeping around that tall peak):

mt wilson sat sun

Google terrain map:

Picture 234

And here’s the ridgeline, from what I believe is the north. The observatory is on the left, and the tall tower with 4 red lights in the webcam shot is the one to the right. (To give you an idea of the foreshorening in the webcam shot, it’s about the same height as Sutro Tower.)

The next time you complain about fog in San Francisco, consider this rather terrifying panorama of the fires in the San Gabriel Mountains above JPL in Pasadena (via The Planetary Society and Leticia Montanez).


Guerrero Beach

August 29, 2009

At the foot of Bernal Island, logs have washed up on Guerrero Beach.

guerrero beach driftwood

As usual, click to zoom.

guerrero park tree panorama

(Those of you from Washington and British Columbia know what I’m talking about.)


victoria driftwood