Friday, May 10, 2013

Coastal commission approves San Francisco beach soccer playing fields plan

Regional environmentalists weep....

San Francisco Chronicle/John Wildermuth, 5/9/13.  "San Francisco soccer field project wins panel's OK."

To the dismay of local environmentalists, the California Coastal Commission on Thursday gave San Francisco the go-ahead to replace the dilapidated grass soccer fields at Beach Chalet in Golden Gate Park with artificial turf fields lit for nighttime play.  The commission's decision to reject its staff report and dismiss the challenge to the city's $14 million plan came after more than five hours of impassioned testimony and discussion.
Artificial turf here we come...

 Another good day for civilization !
For the city, the final vote was vindication for the years-long planning process that had been approved by a variety of San Francisco boards and commissions. "We're very pleased with the result," said Phil Ginsburg, general manager of the city's Recreation and Park Department. "This is a win for the kids."

....   The dispute pitted environmental groups concerned about the effect artificial turf and field lights would have on the coast, local wildlife and the "naturalistic landscape" of the western end of Golden Gate Park against city officials, parents and soccer and lacrosse players and coaches who argued that San Francisco desperately needs the improvements at Beach Chalet, which will triple the amount of playing time available at the site.

While the final vote was unanimous, the commission had plenty of concerns.  "The lack of soccer fields isn't an issue for the commission, it's whatever meets the coastal rules set by the state," said Commissioner Steve Blank, who opposed the city plan but was not present for the final vote. "Our review is based on the needs of 38 million Californians, not just those in San Francisco." But other members, many of them elected officials from coastal communities, argued that active recreation is an appropriate use for coastal property and suggested that the commission's staff had overstepped by challenging the city plan.  Read article.

Related -  CBS News/11/27/12. "Group moves to fight lawsuit against San Francisco Golden Gate park Turf Fields."  "Supporters of San Francisco’s plan to convert the Beach Chalet soccer fields in Golden Gate Park from grass to artificial turf Tuesday asked a judge to allow them to join the city in fighting a lawsuit filed by opponents seeking to block the project."   Ocean Beach bulletin, 5/9/13, includes Coastal Commission Staff Report.  The right photograph of the Beach Chalet Soccer Fields sign was taken by Tom Prete from this article.

Posted by Kathy Meeh


Anonymous said...

Score one for the humans.

Anonymous said...

Wait till the dogs leave their mark on this fiasco. SFDog toilet alert!

Anonymous said...

The grass feels pain when you cut it.

Thus lawnmowers should be banned.

Anonymous said...

When humans exhale we create CO2.
Mass suicide is our obligation to the planet.