District 8 Supervisor Scott Wiener dragged out the same mischaracterizations of the Western SoMa Plan he always uses when entertainment folks are present, as the Land Use Committee of the Board considered a zoning amendment to legalize a nightclub in close proximity to the Kissling Alley Residential Enclave District. Relying on industry lobbyist Terrance Alan, the ethically-challenged former Entertainment Commissioner, for his facts, Wiener repeated his claim that the Plan was “unfriendly to entertainment.” He knows better but panders to the entertainment community every chance he gets.
Drag show impresario Heklina, a.k.a. Stefan Grygelko, has bought the building on the northwest corner of Folsom and 11th, formerly home to Caliente, the Oasis and Club VSF.
The committee agreed to send their positive recommendation to the full Board of Supervisors where a yes vote is a sure thing. No one votes against fun.
My remarks at the Land Use Committee today are as follows:
So many lies have been spoken about the Western SoMa Community Plan when it comes to entertainment that I’m going to have to use most of my two minutes to try to address the most egregious of them.
The Plan was the product of eight years of hard work by those who live, work and play in South of Market.
The Western SoMa Plan opens up one third of the plan area to fully permitted entertainment … far more than you’ll find in District 8 (Scott Wiener’s district) or 9 (where David Campos, the other co-sponsor, resides). But because of pressure from the entertainment lobby and those beholden to it, Supervisor Kim felt compelled to shoehorn this essentially incompatible zoning into the neighborhood.
If the Western SoMa Plan had been adopted as originally written, this club, and every other club on 11th Street, would have been grandfathered in and there would be no buffer zones to worry about.
The Western SoMa Plan is predicated on the need for everyone to be a good neighbor. Sure there have to be rules — since when is it supposed to be easy to open a nightclub? — but some tough rules apply to the neighbors too.
Whether you’re in Pacific Heights, the Castro or South of Market, we’re all bound by one big idea:
Everybody is entitled to the peaceful and quiet use and enjoyment of their home.
And if you don’t respect that — regardless of what they do today — every neighbor has the right to haul your butt into small claims court where neither your Facebook friends nor Scott Wiener can help you.
As I said, if the Western SoMa Plan had been adopted as we wrote it, there would be no buffer zones to worry about.
It was our desire to welcome new forms of entertainment into our neighborhoods. Heklina, I hope you’re prepared to become a part of this community. Step one is being a good neighbor.