Tenderloin's Turk-Hyde Mini Park to reopen after full playground renovation

The Turk-Hyde Mini Park's new play structures and seating areas. | Photos: Carrie Sisto/Hoodline
By Carrie Sisto - Published on March 02, 2020.

With the city's highest number of children per capita — but limited outdoor space — the Tenderloin is dependent on play spaces like the Turk-Hyde Mini-Park. Occupying 6,500 square feet at the corner of Turk and Hyde streets, the park caters to younger children, including those that attend preschool nearby. 

This afternoon, the park will reopen after a nine-month closure for renovations. New plastic and metal play structures have replaced the worn-out old set, which was made of copper and arsenic-treated wood. There's also a new shaded seating area for parents and caregivers.

The Turk-Hyde Mini Park prior to its renovation. | Photo: Tenderloin Community Benefit District

Major renovations of the Turk-Hyde Mini-Park and nearby Sgt. John Macaulay Park (at O’Farrell and Larkin streets) have been in the works for several years. Because of the Tenderloin's high youth density and low median income, both were tagged as priorities for the 2012 Let’s Play SF bond, which earmarked about $15.5 million to improve the worst of the city’s playgrounds.

Rec and Park partnered with the SF Parks Alliance to select 13 priority playgrounds, including the two in the Tenderloin, awarding the Turk-Hyde project $1 million from the 2012 bond funding and $700,000 from the office of former mayor Ed Lee.

Sylvester Guard, Jr.'s mural overlooks the new playground equipment.

A new mural by Sylvester Guard, Jr. was added to the wall overlooking the park at the end of 2019, thanks to a collaboration between the Tenderloin Community Benefit District and the building's owners, the Murphy family.

UC Hastings Law, the Dolmen Property Group and the Handlery Foundation contributed funds towards the mural, which depicts flowers and hummingbirds. Guard said the mural doesn’t have a title, because he prefers to let the viewer decide how to interpret his work. 

Guard, who has lived in the Tenderloin for 26 years, recently completed another mural at the Seneca Hotel, where he used to reside. He has installed murals across San Francisco, and says the Tenderloin “deserves reflective and respectable art.”

Meanwhile, the $1.98 million renovation at Sgt. Macaulay Park, funded by Let's Play SF and the Trust for Public Land, is still underway. The park is also set to get new, safer equipment and improved seating, along with the removal of a few trees to create a more open play space in its center. 

As with the Turk-Hyde Mini Park, a building facing Macaulay Park now bears a mural of flowers, painted by San Francisco-based muralist Fnnch. Rec and Park did not respond to queries as to when the park will reopen.

Work to revamp the Sgt. Macaulay Park playground is still underway.

The formal ribbon cutting for the Turk-Hyde Mini Park is scheduled for 3:30 p.m. today and will feature remarks from Mayor London Breed, Tenderloin District station captain Carl Fabbri, District 6 Supervisor Matt Haney, and representatives of several neighborhood groups.

Kids' activities will include art making, collaborative coloring with a muralist, and a musical performance, city officials said. 

About 11 hours ago
San Francisco Chinatown

Long-delayed Empress of China reboot Empress by Boon to open June 18

More than six years after we lost the kitschy favorite Empress of China, the opening of its potential Michelin star contender Empress by Boon now looks to be just a month away. Read More

About 12 hours ago
San Francisco NoPa

11-year-old Bistro Central Parc in NoPa to be revived under new owner

Bistro Central Parc, the popular French bistro at 560 Central Avenue in the NoPa neighborhood that closed in December 2019, will be reopening under new ownership but under the same name in June. Read More

May 06, 2021
San Francisco Hayes Valley Mid-Market

Market Street’s upscale Zuni Cafe is eliminating tips altogether

When the James Beard Award-winning Zuni Cafe reopens for indoor dining, they’ll be closing the gap between front-of the-house and back-of-the-house wages by eliminating tips and adding a 20% service fee. Read More

May 05, 2021
San Francisco Castro Mission

Mission Bay coffee truck Spro Coffee expanding to the Castro this summer

Castro residents will soon have another cafe option in the neighborhood. Mission Bay-based mobile cafe Spro Coffee Lab will be opening its second location at 500 Church St., formerly Mauerpark. Read More