Neighbor wages campaign against proposed Marina Green restaurant

Beth Laberge/Special to the S.F. ExaminerNot hungry: Fataneh and Arthur Scampa live on Marina Boulevard across the street from a proposed Marina Green restaurant.

Seventy-year-old Arthur Scampa has lived on Marina Boulevard for about three decades and says he has never complained to City Hall. But he’s complaining now.

Scampa and his wife, Fataneh, are fighting the Recreation and Park Department’s proposal to allow a seafood restaurant on Marina Green at the site of a building formerly owned by the U.S. Navy.

“This is a major change of a public park,” Scampa said. “It’s just crazy.”

Scampa, who lives across from the site, objects to the proposal for numerous reasons: traffic, light pollution, the impact on birds, the increased noise and the serving of alcohol near children who play soccer there. He said he would even pay for the structure’s conversion into a clubhouse for kids instead. The Coalition for San Francisco Neighborhoods, a group of 48 neighborhood groups, also has come out against the restaurant proposal.

However, the proposal is strongly supported by the Marina Community Association, which represents about 1,000 area residents.

The Recreation and Park Commission unanimously approved the deal in September, after beginning the process more than a year ago.

“We think this is a great use of a community asset that has been vacant for over 30 years,” said Sarah Ballard, Rec and Park  spokeswoman.

But Scampa said support is limited among his immediate neighbors. Of the 85 homes on Marina Boulevard, Scampa said there might be one supporter.

Scampa is now trying to get the attention of City Hall. He has sent a letter to the Board of Supervisors and has attempted to meet with supervisors. He has suggested that Supervisor Mark Farrell, whose District 2 includes the site, should recuse himself since his father has vocally supported the proposal and sits on the board of directors of the Marina Community Association.

Farrell called that complaint irrelevant, adding that while he understands some of the criticism, he believes the lease should be approved.

Under the 10-year lease deal with two five-year options, Woodhouse Marina Green would rehab the site and transform it into a counter-service seafood restaurant with seating for 25 indoors and 50 in outdoor patio seating.

The business would be open 11 a.m. to 7 p.m. seven days a week and possibly open for breakfast at 7 a.m. The business would generate about $110,000 a year for Rec and Park.

The Board of Supervisors Government Audit and Oversight Committee will vote on the lease proposal today. If ultimately approved by the board, the restaurant also would require approval by the San Francisco Bay Conservation and Development Commission. And the Rec and Park Commission would have to approve the restaurant’s final design.

jsabatini@sfexaminer.com

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