More than a hundred Western SoMa neighbors (and plenty of friends from around the city) showed up last week at the celebration of the adoption of the Western SoMa Community Plan. After eight grueling years of work (and more than a little controversy) it was a lovefest for the neighbors, activists, entertainment industry advocates and small business owners who gathered to hear from Supervisor Jane Kim, former Senior Planner Paul Lord, Planning Department rep Corey Teague and myself.
Michael Nulty sent along a link to his photos of the event.
The Western SoMa Citizens Planning Task Force ceased to exist upon adoption of the Plan. I sent my last email out to the surviving members of the Task Force and in particular to those who helped to get us over the finish line. The message read:
Dear neighbors and friends,
That was quite a party. Thanks to everybody who came out last night to celebrate the adoption of the Western SoMa Community Plan. It was great to see so many old friends. The crowd LOOKED like South of Market (and that’s a good thing)!
Special thanks to Supervisor Jane Kim and her staff. Supervisor Kim deserves a lot of credit for shepherding the Plan through the adoption process. There were some real panic-inducing moments along the way but she dominated the debate and secured near consensus with a vote of 10-1 at the Board. Danny Yadegar came into the mix at last minute, filling in for April Veneracion while she’s off on maternity leave, and he did a remarkable job getting up to speed on a myriad of controversial issues related to the Plan. April herself served for more than four years on the Task Force and was a tireless advocate for the Plan once she began serving as a legislative aide at city hall. Sunny Angulo summarized the Plan beautifully, mobilized the community when it was needed the most and had a lot to do with throwing a fantastic celebration last night.
I can’t begin to thank everybody who played a role in the creation of the Western SoMa Community Plan. Many were at the party last night. Peter Cohen, Tom Radulovich, my dear friend and vice-chair Toby Levy, Barry Synoground, from the DNA Lounge and Pizza … I know I’m missing a lot of folks and the list could go on and on …
But I would be remiss not to remind everyone just how much we owe to former Supervisor Chris Daly. Chris and Matt Gonzalez were the original sponsors of the resolution that established the Western SoMa Citizens Planning Task Force. Chris put a lot of faith in us and gave us everything we ever needed. It took more than eight years but I think we accomplished just about everything that we promised to do. It’s a good Plan, a righteous one.
Paul Lord came out of retirement briefly last night to share a brew or two and put his unique spin on what we just accomplished. He put his heart into this Plan. And Corey Teague, Paul’s successor on the Task Force, has worked his little butt off for the last three years dotting the i’s and crossing the t’s to make sure the Plan passes legal muster. In fact, that’s one of the reasons for this last email.
It took hundreds and hundreds of pages of detailed Code work to enshrine and implement the Plan. That’s been Corey’s mission since he first became involved in the work of the Task Force. There are four attachments included with this message. They are the official copies of the ordinances signed by Mayor Ed Lee. I thought you might like to see what we just did. You all deserve my heartfelt congratulations for a job well done.