Wednesday, April 02, 2008

Treasure Island

Some shots of the San Francisco skyline from Treasure Island.

The island is a former Navy base, and is almost entirely empty. It seems like the land, with it's views of the Bay and the city, only a few minutes drive across the bridge to downtown, would be worth millions if not billions of dollars. Some people do apparently live there, in the Navy housing converted into apartments, and there is some Coast Guard housing on Yerba Buena Island just south of it, connected by a causeway. There are also some larger buildings, but I'm not sure what they are used for - they look like they may have once been hangars.

Most of the buildings, though, appear abandoned. Some roofs have collapsed, the Nimitz Conference Center has numerous smashed windows. For all that, it still seems to have tremendous potential. Perhaps along the line of other base redevelopments. The one that immediately springs to mind is Governor's Island off of Manhattan.

Supposedly it will soon be turned into a "self-sufficient city," but what I've read it sounds like many other ambitious developments that never see fruition. I think I might prefer it as it is, or nearly so. Low-density, solid but not upscale, with the only major changes being the addition of basic services (a gas station and a grocery store, for instance) and the repair of the damages. Maybe find more exciting uses for some of the more interesting structures. But it is an interesting oasis next to the very dense, very expensive downtown that sits across the water from it.

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1 comment:

Guv'ner said...

So you're in San Francisco? I feel out-of-the-loop.

Indeed, it sounds like Governor's Island is the east coast twin for this place. But NYC at least has a real plan (at long last) on how to develop their area, even if they did choose the milktoast planning option.

You mention "interesting structures" at the end there - let's see 'em!