Hope springs eternal

Life in San Francisco can look bleak in January as we look at the gray skies knowing we should wish for rain but secretly hoping the sun will come out. In this post-holiday mood it’s encouraging to see that young people are still coming up with imaginative ideas to make our city more enticing. The S.F. Chronicle today reports on a project at the Berkeley College of Environmental Design in which students designed uses for the abandoned Bay Bridge link now being replaced by a new bridge. Although the reality is that the structure will probably be torn down when the new bridge is ready, it is nonetheless fascinating to see how housing, hotels, and even farms might flourish on the span. People have unexpected ways of using space and some city projects throughout the country have provided far more pleasure than expected. New Yorkers use of the old high line railway on the West Side of Manhattan is a case in point. Wouldn’t it be nice to think that in San Francisco too, we might imaginatively make abandoned spaces into places of beauty? We should all thank the students and instructors who have shown us how to dream.

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