The SF Waterfront War hits Glass Ceiling this November


Get your waders on cause it’s time to get wet and duke it out over the San Francisco Waterfront once for all  (or at least for a few generations).  The seven year itch to erect the project known as 8 Washington has not yet cooled.  This hotly contested development has many critics and many supporters alike.  Who should you believe?  I don’t have answers for you, per se, just more questions to ruminate over as November 5 comes closer.


You can vote the way your favorite organizations tell you to vote, that’s always an option.   Or you can decide for yourself where you stand (for now) in this ongoing citywide battle of public vs. private development and the murky waters in between.  Is it good or bad to have a an old lot turned into a nice fancy green space that is open to the public even if its operated by a private company?  Should the city rewrite its laws for height limits on its best land to meet the developers’ plans?  Is it good enough that the project will make a huge contribution ($11 million) to the Affordable Housing Fund to mitigate the high sticker price of the 8 Washington luxury homes?


This November, if you do vote, and you really should, you will have to pick a side on the future of San Francisco’s beautiful waterfront territory.  Way back when (after the big quake), the tall, awkward Embarcadero freeway was torn down and laws were put into place to prevent obstruction of the waterfront by development in the future-nothing higher than 84 feet.  The 8 Washington plan needs to increase that limit to over 130 ft to install their LEED certified condominiums, parking structures and green open space plan.  Is that cool with you?


The ballot measures to look out for are Measure B and Measure C.  YES on B means raise the height limit and let em develop it already.  To go NO, you are encouraged to vote NO on B and NO on C.  Both campaign videos are posted below and explain themselves in their own words.  Both claim to be advocates for public recreational space, both claim to be concerned with Affordable housing, you see where I am going with this…both are trying to assert a similar narrative about what their core values are.


It’s up to you to decide which one really builds the San Francisco you want your kids to see and brag about.


Get beyond the surface of these ballot measures and their impact on you at the next SHARP meeting, where both sides of the issue get their time to shine in front of your discerning eyes.  1736 9th Avenue @Moraga.  7pm.  Monday, September 30th, 2013.

YES on B Video

NO on B-NO on C Video

Labor Day Weekend Fun + Obamacare Videos

Visual arts: Sausalito Art Festival

This annual event, spanning more than 60 years, draws tens of thousands of art lovers to the North Bay with promises of food, wine, art and live music. With The Psychedelic FursLisa Marie Presley and more. 9 a.m.-6 p.m. Saturday-Sunday, until 5 p.m. Monday. $5-$25. Marinship Park, Sausalito.

2013 San Francisco Zine Fest | Golden Gate Park

2013 San Francisco Zine Fest: Saturday | Golden Gate Park

The San Francisco Zine Fest is a free, annual celebration of small-press publishing from zines and comics to art books and beyond from 11 am to 5 pm on August 31 and September 1, 2013.

Over the two-day festival at the San Francisco County Fair Building in Golden Gate Park, over 140 small-press and DIY creators will be selling, trading, and otherwise sharing their work. There are tons of free workshops and panels and, as always, the show is free to attend.

32nd Annual Sand Sculpture Contest | Point Reyes

Sunday, September 1, 2013 - 9:00 am to 3:30 pm | Cost: FREE
Drakes Beach | Drakes Beach Road, Point Reyes Station, CA 94956

32nd Annual Sand Sculpture Contest | Point Reyes

Build your sandy masterpiece at the Point Reyes National Seashore’s 32nd Annual Sand Sculpture Contest at Drakes Beach from 9 am to 3:30 pm on September 1, 2013.

The event is free for both participants and spectators and prizes will be awarded for all age categories. Registration begins at 9 am at the Ken Patrick Visitor Center. Judging begins at noon.

Prizes will be awarded at 3 pm in categories including Children (14 and under), Families, Adult Individuals, and Adult Groups, as well as a prize for the sculpture with the most recycled plastic.

SHARP Monday Meeting RE-CAP

There are archival videos of the presentations by Organizing For Action and Covered California at the link below.  These cover important information about the history of the Affordable Care Act, the enrollments that begin on October 1st, and the future of the program.

Most people are impacted by these new changes to our healthcare system.  If you have questions, click the link and watch these videos, they will give you an unedited resource for what the professionals are saying about the impact of the Affordable Care Act on you.

SHARP Meeting Tonight 7pm + FREE SPACE MONDAYS



SHARP works hard to be fiscally responsible and to create opportunities to elevate the quality of life in the Sunset Heights District.  One of their boldest ventures has been their brick and mortar building saavy.  After demolishing an old meeting hall and selling off one the lots it was located on, SHARP reinvested in the neighborhood by finding a way to get a loan and construct a gorgeous building located at 1736 9th Avenue.  This investment is on its way to being paid off which empowers SHARP to give even more back to the community.


The ground floor of 1736 9th Avenue hosts a beautiful and well-equipped community room with handicap access, a garden, tables and chairs for dozens of people.  Recently, they have also acquired a projector for film screenings and presentations.  SHARP holds monthly member meetings that are open to the public on the last Monday of the month.  On the other Mondays of the month, SHARP seeks to donate their space to local folks who may need it for a community event, a learning lab, a film screening or some other type of event.  Check out how to apply on our page FREE SPACE MONDAYS!  Applications are currently being accepted.


To remind you, on the docket are presentations on issues that definitely impact you-the Affordable Care Act aka Obamacare and the Masonic Avenue redesign project which removes traffic lanes and parking spaces to install bicycle lanes and center median.  Representatives from Organizing For ActionCovered California and Assembly member Phil Ting‘s office will be talking healthcare and SHARP members will anchor a discussion on Masonic Avenue’s redesign.  Stop by and check out the space!


Masonic Avenue Rendering-thumb

Obamacare and Masonic Avenue August 26th

Masonic Avenue Rendering-thumb
Masonic Avenue can certainly feel like the land of race car ya-yas as it serves 
as a major traffic artery from Fell to Geary streets on San Francisco's west side.  
There's not a lot of folks that disagree with that.  But, finding a solution that 
truly benefits all the users of that roadway is ultimately a challenge, still.  
About three years ago, there were a series of community meetings at the Day School 
on Masonic Avenue to discuss with the locals a plan to redesign the street and, 
in 2012, the final redesign selection of Masonic Street was accepted.  However, 
since then, concerns have risen around the final design choice for the Masonic 
Avenue corridor.  San Francisco citizens are emerging from many corners to raise 
questions about whether this is really the RIGHT plan for Masonic Street.
Issues like these often disintegrate into a stereotypical car v. bike war in 
our fair city and it is pretty hard to get an honest discussion going that 
meets the needs of all concerned parties.  In the Sunset Heights hood, a 
number of organizations have taken official stands against the new plan 
including SHARP and Golden Gate Heights Neighborhood Association.  Residents 
complain that while they are not against more bike friendly ways across the city, 
this plan will put out a lot of people who will most likely never ever ride a 
bike down Masonic Street.  The main problem is parking.  The plan removes over 
150 parking spaces from Masonic street and adds two raised bicycle lanes that 
are lower than the sidewalk but higher than the road.

“Gina” is a dog walker.  She says she needs to park her car there to do her 
job and other people do too.  She brings up the point that there are many 
seniors who can’t bike and need to park their cars to accomplish their daily 
life routines.  She also believes in biking and creating more room for bikes, 
“I admire bikers who do it well.  So many bikers don’t know how invisible 
they are which leads to unintended consequences.”  So, she contends, “why 
compete with cars, there are other streets parallel that could be used 
instead.”  She brings up Lincoln Avenue in the Sunset and 19th, claiming those roads 
are far better for cars than bikes.

“Greg” has problem with the new plan, too.  
He feels there needs to be a consideration for the “greater good” and wants 
the redesign to serve bikes as well as those who need parking.  “If there is 
common ground, then we can work together to find a resolution”  In other words, 
the all out bike/car war in SF does not benefit anyone.  He is worried about 
the new Target store coming in at Geary Street and the traffic that will bring.  
He remarks on the JFK boulevard redesign in Golden Gate Park that has 
been heavily criticized for making things more dangerous for cars, bikes and 
people, not less. If you look at the data, (MTA counts riders), he says,
the number of bikes actually using Masonic Avenue is quite low, even at 
peak hours.  He also felt that parallel streets with less traffic should 
be allocated to bikers rather than removing so much parking from Masonic for 
very few riders. Clearly, it is much more complicated than it seems to manage 
the needs of all our urban dwellers and how they choose to move around.To get a 
bit deeper into this hot button issue, turn up for SHARP’s monthly 
meeting where this topic will be a topic of discussion.

Also, on the table is Obamacare as the enrollment period begins 
on October 1st of this year.  There will guest speakers covering 
both subjects.  It should prove for a lively discussion. 
See you there!

August Meeting----- Monday August 26 7:00 PM
SHARP Community Room 1736 – 9TH Avenue near Moraga


Love it or hate it, registration under the Affordable Care Act (commonly known as Obamacare) begins this October 1st.

And on Monday, August 26 at 7 pm, the Sunset Heights Association (S.H.A.R.P.) will feature a presentation on Obamacare.  Invited speakers include Susan Pfeifer from Organizing for Action, and Carolyn Saito, certified educator from Covered California. The presentation will address “How does it impact me?”  and “Who do I contact to enroll or get information?” The impacts on Medicare (none?), Medicaid, veterans, those who already have insurance, uninsured persons and small businesses will also be addressed.  We’ll also hear about specifics of the new Health Benefit Exchange, discuss the impact on the nation as a whole, and get many of our questions answered. Other parts of Obamacare are already in effect, allowing parents to carry their children up to age 26 on their health insurance and a ban on excluding persons with pre-existing conditions from health insurance.  Also available to answer questions, Emily Savage, from Assemblyman Phil Ting's office.

Also on the agenda August 26: discussion of a plan to restrict north-south car traffic from our neighborhood on Masonic Boulevard, featuring S.H.A.R.P. member Daniel Tomasevich.

Light refreshments will be served. The public is invited, bring your neighbors.


Grey2Green + GOP + New Programs!




SHARP is stirring up the community pot with new programs!  Soumyaa Kapil Behrens is a Strategic Media Specialist whose work focuses on geo-specific communities and communities engaged with the environment.  This blog launches her work for SHARP, integrating news, member programs, and strategic partnerships in the Sunset Heights area aimed at bolstering the impact SHARP has on the community and creating new ways for members to benefit from SHARP’s philanthropic mission.  Stay tuned for information on local news and views as well as details on SHARP’s exciting new small grants and free space initiatives.  Very exciting times for the Sunset Heights hamlet!



Carla Short, Urban Forester from the Department of Public Works explains the ins and outs of the new Grey2Green sidewalk program that encourages residents to erect small gardens in lieu of concrete in front of their homes and businesses.  The program helps trees that are already in place as well as provides a habitat for local birds and bees as well as putting water that normally goes down sewer drains to better use.  You can learn more about the Grey2Green program at



GOP Green


SHARP welcomed a diverse set of political representatives to July’s meeting as well.  Matt Shupe, newly minted Executive Director of the SF Republic Party, and Barry Hermanson, Green Party candidate for Congress.  This combo proved for interesting discussion as Shupe distanced himself from the larger, national GOP, hoping folks could find common ground in SF.  Hermanson took a more big picture approach, letting membership know why he still believed in the values of the Green Party and lauding the work of consumer advocate and Presidential candidate, Ralph Nader.

To learn more about the SF GOP:

To learn more about the Green Party Candidate Barry Hermanson: