Sisters to Move Easter Celebration to Golden Gate Park

The annual Sister’s of Perpetual Indulgence Easter Celebration /Hunky Jesus Contest will not be in the Mission and Dolores Park this year, but will move to Hellman Hollow in Golden Gate Park. Word went out this morning on The Sister’s Facebook page.  Sister Phyliss Withe-Litaday posted that ‘They are moving on up”, a reference to Hellman Meadow’s larger size and reputation as on of San Francisco’s best sites for outdoor shows. Public transportation is good and the Sisters are discussing setting up a shuttle from the Castro.

Sister move Easter to GGP

We know Rec and Park is concerned about being able to host some of the bigger events in Dolores this year because the park is undergoing renovation . We have already heard from folks at SF Symphony that they will move to The Civic Center this summer.

Connie Chang, Rec and Park Deputy Director of Public Affairs told us that they are evaluating the permits for the large ongoing Dolores events on a case by case basis and will announce any changes.

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Let the Renovating Begin!

Dear park advocates, we have all worked  long hours, attended many meetings, wrote letters and picked up trash. It is time to pause, reflect and celebrate  a new beginning for Dolores Park.

Please join Supervisor Scott Wiener, San Francisco Recreation and Park Department GM Phil Ginsburg, Dolores Park Works and park advocates for a groundbreaking ceremony for the renovation of Dolores Park.

SF Rec and Park Dolores Park Groundbreaking 03.01.14-page-0

Come on out before the fence goes up!
Saturday, March 1st, 2014

9:00 a.m. –  The Dolores Park Volunteers and DPWorks will rake hipster hill on last time before the dust flies. This will be our moment to thank you, the neighbors, merchants, friends and supporters of Dolores. Coffee and pastry from Dolores Park Cafe.

10:00 a.m. - Welcome Remarks and Groundbreaking Ceremony.

BACKGROUND
For nearly a century San Franciscans have enjoyed the 13.7-acres of recreational opportunities provided by Mission Dolores Park. To help keep up with the use of the park and make much-needed infrastructure improvements, San Francisco voters approved the 2008 Clean and Safe Neighborhood Parks Bond, a $185 million general obligation bond that includes bond funding to improve Mission Dolores Park. The South-end (tennis courts to the Clubhouse) will be the half of a two-phase construction process.

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Construction Begins on New School

Work has begun to turn a once Lutheran Church at 601 Dolores Street into the Children’s Day School Middle School Campus (grades 5-8).  Molly Huffman, Head of the CDS reports in a  letter to the community,  ”I believe, this will give us a first class facility for teaching and learning that respects the wonderful history of 601 Dolores and its surrounding neighbors.”  Last used as a private residence, the fate of this beautiful and historic property was the cause of much speculation. Dolores Park Works was relived that the CDS stepped forward with an offer on the $8 million dollar property. It has been almost two years since we reported that the SF Planning Commission had approved the use conversion for 601 Dolores.

All work should be completed by mid-February 2015 with the first classes in the building starting September 2015.
The historic "castle on the park" - now becoming a middle school!

The historic “castle on the park” – now becoming a middle school!

Construction is estimated to take approximately 11-12 months and will begin in earnest the first week of March. Some preliminary work began last Friday. During the month of February, there will more pre-construction work. Then, for approximately 8-10 weeks, the General Contractor, Plant Construction Company, will dismantle certain areas within the building so that a new structural system can be installed.  The scope of work includes a structural/seismic upgrade of the building and renovations to transform the ground floor into the new entry, with classrooms, offices and circulation.  The current main floor will have a large assembly in the former nave and classrooms on the south end.  The mezzanine will become the third floor and contain classrooms and a student study area.  The roof will have planting beds and benches for students to use when tending the plantings and for lunch. The full schedule follows:

1.  By mid-February:

·      Salvage of existing fixtures (appliances), cabinetry and wood burning stoves

·      Designation of street space for construction parking beginning Monday, February 10

2. By the end of February:

·      Site fencing installed around the perimeter of the building, including the sidewalk

·      Removal of two street trees on 19th Street (to be replaced at the end of construction)

·      Removal and proper disposal of garage floor surface

·      Installation of jobsite trailer, within the construction fencing

·      Installation of scaffolding at the exterior of the building 

3.  Starting early March:

Construction will begin. For approximately 16 weeks, subcontractors will be working inside the building at the lower level excavating around the perimeter so that new footings and grade beams can be installed to support the new structural system. Soil and other materials will be removed on a regular basis throughout this phase. These materials will be loaded into trucks and hauled away to appropriate recycle and dump sites. Some of the soil will be stockpiled and used to backfill the excavation. 

In addition, the utilities serving the building will be upgraded.  This work will be done in conjunction with the San Francisco Water Department and PG&E, and will involve connections to main services located in the street, sidewalk and nearby power poles.

 When construction begins, you will notice an up-tick of activity and noise. Please note that construction will be managed in accordance with City of San Francisco guidelines, procedures and codes. Working hours will be from 7 a.m. to 5 p.m., Monday through Friday.  If necessary, due to scheduling, work may take place occasionally on Saturday. 

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Park Project Contract to be Awarded this Month

The Dolores Park rehabilitation project has a contractor with a bid $4 Million over original estimates (If all goes according to plan). Director Of Capital & Planning Division, Dawn Kamalanathan broke the news at last week’s Parks Recreation and Open Space Advisory Committee (PROSAC) meeting.

The biggest reason for this overage according to Rec and Park was the delay in the project caused by a long Planning Department review. Planning had the plans for almost a year. The scope of the project did expanded slightly from the original 2007 estimates made for the 2008 bond. And there will be a 10% cost to phase the work and keep half the park open at all times. But the biggest increase is definitely because we missed the 2011/12 window for a more competitive bid climate. Jake Gilchrist, Dolores Park project manager told us. “We’re seeing year over year construction cost increases of 10-30%.”

A few weeks before the oppening of the Hellen Diller Playground. You can see the crowds held back by the conctruction fence. photo by Todd Lapin  http://www.flickr.com/photos/telstar/6808874148/

Dolores from a balloon, March 4, 2012. A few weeks before the opening of the Hellen Diller Playground. You can see the crowds held back by the construction fence.
photo by Todd Lapin

Where are these the additional funds expected to come from? Rec and Park has held a significant chunk of the 2008 Bond in reserve for this project because they foresaw the increase in construction costs.

Groundbreaking is now expected around March 1 of this year, but Jake Gilchrist will get the date nailed down in the next couple weeks. The time between Commission approval and groundbreaking is required for the contractor to get signed, insurances get processed, etc., he tells us. Alten Construction, Inc. is the general contractor and Bauman Landscape, the Helen Diller Playground contractor, is the landscape construction subcontractor. Jake and Rec and Parks Capital Improvement division will bring the contract to the Rec and Park Commission for final approval, January 23. We will be there to report hopefully good news.

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Donate to Dolores Park Works Today

What a great year for Dolores Park! In 2013 we organized 12 Clean-Ups, contributing over 434 volunteer hours to the beautification of Dolores. With your donations we purchased rakes, brooms, work gloves, and other tools for our volunteer Clean-Ups. The long awaited renovations to Dolores’ lawns, paths, benches and restrooms were approved and will begin in early 2014.  We plan to be here in 2014 to help maintain and encourage respect for the new renovated Park

As we look forward to the New Year, we hope you  will GIVE a charitable, tax deductible gift to Dolores Park Works. Your generosity will enable us to grow and launch new projects in 2014, while continuing to support our volunteer Clean-Ups and other community-based efforts.P1020977

Our 2013 Achievements

  • Hosted 12 Park Clean-Ups with: Wells Fargo, Marriott, Mission High School, Bi-Rite Market,and the Sisters of Perpetual Indulgence, Whole Foods Market Street.
  • Joined Mayor Lee, Supervisors Campos and Wiener and the Department of Public Works in the Giant Sweep clean-up of our neighborhood.
  • Launched our “Respect the Park” campaign at Film Night in the Park.

    Don't Forget the Little Things!

    Don’t Forget the Little Things!

All charitable gifts go a long way towards Dolores Park Works’ mission of park advocacy and service. Any donation will be acknowledged and appreciated. We will multiply your dollars with volunteer hours and merchant gifts.   So please help us celebrate, preserve and enhance Dolores Park by giving today.  With your help, we can deepen our commitment to Dolores Park and the community surrounding it in 2014Screen Shot 2013-12-17 at 9.02.57 AM

Donate online here!

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