Category Archives: social heritage

From casket factories to convention centers: a photographic memory

Ted's Howard Street


Janet Delaney will be presenting photos from the current de Young exhibition, Janet Delaney: South of Market, at St. Patrick Catholic Church on Mission Street, on Thursday July 16. Preservation Planner Jonathan Lammers will provide an overview of SoMa’s oft-contested development history.

Janet Delaney built a darkroom in the third bedroom, and started photographing her neighborhood. South of Market was filled with industry: casket factories, blacksmiths, sign shops, auto mechanics. It was a working class neighborhood with families, a growing gay population, and artists. But that was about to change, and Delaney wanted to capture it on film.

Read more and listen to radio interview:



Leave a comment

Filed under art, events, planning, politics, social heritage

SoMa professor honored at Sunday’s Folsom Street Fair


Dr. Gayle Rubin, an Associate Professor of Anthropology and Women’s Studies at the University of Michigan in Ann Arbor, was surprised to be given a “Key to the Fair” plaque from the Board of Directors at Sunday’s Folsom Street Fair. Gayle and her partner Jay are both longtime South of Market residents and Gayle spends as much time as her schedule allows in their converted industrial space on Sheridan Alley.  Continue reading

Leave a comment

Filed under community services, events, planning, social heritage

Welcome to Folsom Street! Meet the neighbors

neighbors high res


Memo to the Realtex Group: this would be a good time to invite prospective tenants of your new 57 unit development to come down to Folsom and Dore Alley to meet the neighbors. Well, maybe this time next year.

Today the Up Your Alley Fair made its annual appearance in SoMa. Generally described as a celebration of kink, it is held on the last Sunday of July every year. The Folsom Street Fair, the world’s largest leather and fetish event, is held later in September. Folsom Street and Dore Alley are generally considered the epicenter of both events.  Continue reading

Leave a comment

Filed under housing, planning, social heritage

Planning Commission approves $1.8 million in Ringold Alley improvements

On May 22, the Planning Commission approved an in-kind agreement with the project sponsor at 8th and Harrison Streets that would help fund Ringold Alley improvements along the northern edge of the nearly four acre site which will contain a residential and commercial mix of uses.

The project is subject to pay $6,268,102.44 in Eastern Neighborhoods infrastructure impact fees. 4Terra Investments asked the Commission to allow them to directly provide $1.8 million in infrastructure improvements to build out a Western SoMa Task Force priority project identified in the Western SoMa Community Planning process and in the Western SoMa implementation document.

The Plan calls for facilitating the movement of pedestrians and bicycles in the alleys, ensuring safety on neighborhood serving streets, improving public realm conditions, and recognizing the social and cultural values and properties of the LGBTQ District. The proposed improvements would include special paving treatments, traffic calming treatments, landscaping, pedestrian lighting, site furnishings, undergrounding of overhead utilities, and public art commemorating the alleyway’s significance to the LGBTQ community.


Filed under social heritage