Here's The Latest From Hoodline Tipsters

Here's The Latest From Hoodline TipstersSunset in Lower Haight by tipster R.G.
Eric Eldon
Published on October 08, 2016

See something interesting or weird happening in front of you as you're going about your day?

Want to figure out what it is, or maybe alert others?

Many of the stories you see us publish are because someone sent us a tip — whether via our email tipline, Twitter, Facebook or somewhere else. 

But sometimes people send good tips that we aren't able to turn into stories. We're going to start publishing those regularly in a post, that we'll call the Tipline. We did a first one the other week as a trial run and people seemed to like it. Here's the next installment.

If you have a tip, you can tell us here and we'll look at how to cover. 

Civic And Breaking News

A large shuttle bus seems to have either taken the wrong street or taken on too many pounds, because it wasn't able to navigate down Mason at Bush at around 8:15am on Thursday morning.

Thanks to Desiree P. for the tip and photos. 

Closer to the Bay, questions remain on the structural integrity of the leaning Millenium Tower, with work frozen on the Transbay tunnel as the matter is investigated. However, construction prep seems to have begun in the meantime on the Oceanwide Center location, part of the Transbay Terminal (and a potentially key source for its ongoing funding). Here's more from tipster Alex K.: 

It looks as though demolition has started on the future site of the Oceanwide Center at the intersection of 1st street and Mission St. I took the attached photo from my office at 100 First Street. It shows a big hole that has been cut in the roof of the building that is being demolished, as well as an excavator that is sitting on the roof, and a bunch of debris that has been removed from the building in the empty lot that is the future site of the shorter Oceanwide Center.

Check out our previous coverage of the Center for more background.

A rendering of a completed Oceanwide Center by Foster + Partners.

In other eastern SoMa tips, reader Patrick D. wonders why there's pouring water before the rains start this fall.

Hi! I'm not sure why, but for the last two days water has been pouring off the Bay Bridge and splattering across Spear Street where it meets Embarcadero. No idea where it could be coming from.

Tell us if you know more. 

Over in the Mission, Johnemman writes:

Minor thing, but I noticed that the red bus-only lane on Mission at 22nd was repaved yesterday and (re-)replaced with parking spots again. Too many people ignoring it?

Sort of. This part of the new bus lanes is being rolled back after the street's big rapid-bus overhaul was met with stiff criticism from some neighborhood groups. Mission Local has more details from the decision in August. 

Meanwhile, the 16th Street BART plazas are getting some new attention from the city (and Castro-based activist Michael Petrelis who is running for a BART board seat this election). More, from him:

Please consider a story about the major improvements of public health and other conditions at BART's 16th Street Plaza. I've been filing service requests with various public agencies and they're responding with cleanings and pigeon spikes and tree pruning and removal of a dead tree and more power washings.

He sent in the above side-by-side photo to show one of the changes.

Out in the Sunset, Albert W. wonders about all the new mobile homes:

In recent months, I noticed a growing number of mobile homes parked regularly along the southern part of John Muir Drive by Lake Merced. At one point, I counted over 15. I'm now beginning to see these mobile homes spread further out from the area to streets like Sloat Blvd. by 37th Ave. and Winston Dr. by Lowell High School. I'm curious to know what led to this sudden growth of mobile homes in city streets.

The unfortunate answer seems to be that people are living there who might otherwise be homeless. Here's an in-depth look from Jordan Katz

In other troubling news, Jeff B. shares the following story.

My son was hit by a car while crossing in the crosswalk from Palou Mini Park to our house on the 1700 block of Palou Ave. The young driver of a late model dark grey sedan was texting while driving through the intersection. He struck our son and sped away from the scene without stopping to check on him. He can't have failed to notice my son rolling over his hood. Thankfully he was not seriously injured, but I am upset that someone would hit him and flee the scene without checking to see if he was alright.

Stay safe out there!

Local Business Updates

Further up the Great Highway, reader Jonathon wonders about the changes happening at a prominent corner hotel.

[D]rove by yesterday and the brand new sign that the Great Highway Inn had erected less than a year ago had a new banner over it... Rodeway Inn. Is Choice Hotel group now the new owner or just a leasee? If so, that would hopefully mean that the neighborhood shouldn't expect a huge condo development.

We checked with Hoodline writer Walter Thompson, who has been covering the new plans for the location. He says that a spokesperson with Choice Hotel has told him that there are no plans to redevelop the property.

An overhead view of the Great Highway Inn and Pacifica Apartments. | IMAGE: GOOGLE EARTH

Back in West Portal, Stephanie J. reports that "there is a 'LEASED; sign in the window of the recently closed Noah's Bagels on West Portal Ave. Anyone know what's moving in?"

We don't, yet, but this Blatteis Realty listing seems to confirm the newly-leased status. 

Those interested in downtown evening dining now have another option. Sababa, a hot pita bar that opened earlier this year, is adding a dinner option. More, from co-owner Guy Eschel:

I just wanted to email you to let you know that Sababa has just started offering dinner, which I am pretty excited about. We've been really busy at lunch, serving 300 people each day and have been getting great feedback and lots of regulars. We've also received a lot of emails from people that have heard about us either through word of mouth or through media outlets such as Hoodline, but don't work in the FiDi so they don't have the opportunity to try our food. As I'm sure you know, dinner is a bit more fickle in the FiDi, so we are offering delivery through Postmates as well. I was hoping you would be able to write something about our new dinner service which is M-F 5pm-9pm, to help spread the word. Hope to see you soon for lunch or dinner!

In other restaurant news, Jasmine emailed to let us know about a fine dining opportunity:

Chef Virgilio Martinez of Central (recently named #1 on the list of Latin America's 50 Best Restaurants) will be at In Situ on October 10th for a cookbook talk, signing and tasting –  Link here.

Beso Bistronomia in the Castro is taking a pro-seating approach to its surroundings, prompting the following question from tipster Eric B.

So... I'm curious. Does Beso on 18th have a permit to place their tables on the street, particularly in motorcycle parking?

People and Culture

Upper Haight, meanwhile, is keeping its skate-punk vibe going strong.

Kevin R. lets us know that there'll be a cool skate punk rock show at Milk Bar on October 21 featuring a release party for local band Build Them To Break Them. 


In a different musical tradition, reader R.H. reports that:

Navy Musicians playing on 24th street now with crowds blocking the street. Their leaders said they are 500 of them in a Navy that is 350,000 strong. They play at Pier 38 tonight.

Lisa Petrie of The Presidio Trust tells us about the park's new "Share Chairs," which are designed to help provide more seating for many events in the area.

Each chair seats up to four people and is light enough to be moved and reconfigured by users. Four main sitting positions (beach, classic chair, lounger, and hammock) and also flipping it over to be used as a table, make the chairs fun and dynamic. The tapered shape allows them to be arranged for group seating. 
Photo by Sam Malpiedi via The Presidio Trust

Want a free tree? Ben Carlson of the Friends of the Urban Forest lets us konw that Excelsior residents can find out how to get one next Saturday, October 15 from 10:30 to 11:30 a.m. at "Healthy Excelsior at Community Well," a free event at Community Well, 78 Ocean Ave. More details here.

Let us know if you have tips, too! Just tell us a little more information, here.