Courtesy city of South San Francisco

Courtesy city of South San Francisco

South San Francisco lays out plan to revitalize downtown

South San Francisco city officials have unveiled a new plan to revitalize the downtown area with improvements to sidewalks and bike paths, the addition of new green spaces and revamped streetscapes.

The city’s proposal envisions the downtown area becoming “the centerpiece of the city” with a mix of plazas, parks and paths. The area within a half-mile of the Grand Avenue Caltrain station will undergo the various upgrades, pending plan approval from various departments and groups.

“While our downtown has notably improved, we’ve still got a way to go,” South San Francisco Mayor Karyl Matsumoto said in a statement.

Matsumoto said the new plan encompasses both the “big picture goals and the nitty-gritty details” that would be necessary to transform the South City downtown corridor into its ideal state.

One of the goals is to provide transit connectivity to the downtown and Caltrain station area for bicyclists, pedestrians and cars without favoring one form of transit over another.

The city also intends that the plan include new green spaces and plazas that will “support civic life” and encourage residents to spend time in the city’s center.

Maria Martinucci, the CEO of the South San Francisco Chamber of Commerce, chose to withhold commenting on the plan specifics until she attends the public meeting to be held Thursday, but noted she is pleased with the current state of downtown South City.

“With what we have now, we see a lot of people interested in coming into downtown,” she said, adding that some local companies help promote the use of the downtown. Biotech firm Genentech, which is headquartered in South San Francisco, makes an effort to encourage its employees to frequent the restaurants and businesses downtown, Martinucci said.

“We are expanding; we have a lot of great restaurants, lots of new retail coming in. I’m very optimistic,” she said.

Grand Avenue, the city’s “Main Street,” acts as a connector between the downtown area and the neighborhoods east of U.S. Highway 101 where many residents work. Through the proposed improvements, city officials hope to better connect those areas and provide expanded access for residents to walk or bike from one part of town to the other.

A plaza is planned on the southeast corner of the busy intersection of Grand Avenue and Airport Boulevard, and a new pedestrian and bicycle under-crossing will help make the plaza the “primary gateway” to the Caltrain station, according to the plan.

Safety for bicyclists is also a key issue the city hopes to address through the plan. A buffer would be added to an on-ramp at Airport Boulevard to create space between a bicycle lane and the on-ramp lane.

The project, initiated in 2012, is funded by a grant from the Metropolitan Transportation Commission.

The City Council and the South San Francisco Planning Commission hope to have the plan adopted by the end of this year.

A public forum for comment is scheduled Thursday at 6 p.m. at a former Ford dealership at the corner of Miller Avenue and Airport Boulevard. Residents can also submit comments online to: downtownplan@ssf.net.Bay Area NewsGrand AvenueMayor Karyl MatsumotoPeninsulaSouth San Francisco

If you find our journalism valuable and relevant, please consider joining our Examiner membership program.
Find out more at www.sfexaminer.com/join/

Just Posted

Demonstrators commemorated the life of George Floyd and others killed by police outside S.F. City Hall on June 1, 2020.<ins></ins>
Chauvin verdict: SF reacts after jury finds ex-officer guilty on all charges

San Franciscans were relieved Tuesday after jurors found a former Minneapolis police… Continue reading

San Francisco Unified School District Board member Faauuga Moliga, right, pictured with Superintendent Vincent Matthews on the first day back to classrooms, will be board vice president for the remander of the 2121 term. (Kevin N. Hume/S.F. Examiner)
Faauuga Moliga named as school board vice president to replace Alison Collins

The San Francisco school board on Tuesday selected board member Fauuga Moliga… Continue reading

Legislation by Supervisor Rafael Mandelman would require The City to add enough new safe camping sites, such as this one at 180 Jones St. in the Tenderloin, to accomodate everyone living on the street. (Kevin N. Hume/S.F. Examiner)
City would create sites for hundreds of tents under new homeless shelter proposal

Advocates say funding better spent on permanent housing

An instructor at Sava Pool teaches children drowning prevention techniques. (Jordi Molina/ Special to the S.F. Examiner)
Indoor city pools reopen for lap swimming and safety classes

Two of San Francisco’s indoor city pools reopened Tuesday, marking another step… Continue reading

A construction worker rides on top of materials being transported out of the Twin Peaks Tunnel as work continues at West Portal Station on Thursday, August 16, 2018. (Kevin N. Hume/S.F. Examiner)
SFMTA’s poor track record on capital projects risks losing ‘public trust’

Supervisors say cost overruns and delays could jeapordize future ballot revenue measures

Most Read