A new chance for the Bayside

If ever there were an “underserved and economically depressed” neighborhood facing multiple problems, it is Daly City’s Bayside, just over the San Francisco city line.

Among the conveniences lacking in this small, isolated district are the most basic shopping facilities, such as a grocery store. Many low-income residents must cope daily with inadequate transit services to access essential needs.

Most Bay Area residents only have reason to think about the Bayside in connection with shows at the Cow Palace, an aging 16,500-seat arena that has sunk toa distant third choice for major event promoters — far behind the newer San Jose HP Pavilion and Oakland Arena.

Operating the state-owned Cow Palace is the California Department of Food and Agriculture’s Division of Fairs and Expositions, whose administrators seemingly believe the primary mission is to nurture any remnants of their clout. For years, the Cow Palace board of directors has stonewalled Daly City’s pleas to issue a lease 13 acres of parking lots for a neighborhood shopping center providing the first convenient local supermarket, bank, post office, medical clinic, etc.

The Cow Palace board also turned down a private developer who sought to buy the 70-acre site for a mixed-use project last June. He even offered to pay for a new arena that the state could continue operating — either rebuilding it at the same location or on a different property.

But now state Sen. Leland Yee, D-San Mateo/San Francisco, is about to decide whether to introduce a bill requiring the state to sell the Cow Palace. Daly City has first rights to purchase the property, which would cost approximately $80 million to $100 million. The city does not have that much money in its treasury, but it is working on a redevelopment package to obtain funds from a combination of sources, City Manager Patricia Martel said.

Yee should introduce his bill and it should become law. Daly City should assemble a public-private partnership that razes the outmoded arena and its satellite halls, using the acreage for a high-density, mixed-use development that ultimately pays for itself while also providing the Bayside with those long-needed essential services.

We are not calling for San Francisco and the northern Peninsula to be deprived of a convenient, first-rate arena to host the Grand National Rodeo, Horse & Stock Show, Ringling Bros. and Barnum & Bailey Circus, Disney on Ice, Golden Gate Kennel Club Dog Show, and San Francisco Flower & Garden Show. Events such as these are irreplaceable gems of the Bay Area lifestyle, of significant importance to many Bay Area residents.

The Cow Palace needs to be replaced with a state-of-the-art arena at a close-in location offering much better access routes.

General OpinionOpinion

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

The COVID-19 pandemic has prompted changes to The City's streets including Slow Streets closures to increase open space access and the Shared Spaces program, which allows businesses to use public right-of-ways for dining, retail and services. (Examiner illustration)
COVID is reshaping the streets of San Francisco

Walk down Page Street, which is closed to thru-traffic, and you might… Continue reading

At a rally in February, Monthanus Ratanapakdee, left, and Eric Lawson remember Vicha Ratanapakdee, an 84-year-old Thai man who died after he was pushed to the pavement in San Francisco. (Ekevara Kitpowsong/Examiner file photo)
The criminal justice system can’t fix what’s wrong in our community

My 87-year-old mother walks gingerly, slowly, deliberately, one step in front of… Continue reading

Superintendent Vincent Matthews said some students and families who want to return will not be able to do so at this time. “We truly wish we could reopen schools for everyone,” he said. (Kevin N. Hume/S.F. Examiner)
SFUSD sets April reopening date after reaching tentative agreement with teachers union

San Francisco Unified School District has set April 12 as its reopening… Continue reading

José Victor Luna and Maria Anabella Ochoa, who cite health reasons for continuing distance learning, say they have been enjoying walking in Golden Gate Park with their daughters Jazmin, a first grader, and Jessica, a third grader. (Kevin N. Hume/S.F. Examiner)
Some SFUSD families prefer distance learning

Health issues, classroom uncertainties among reasons for staying home

Most Read