Miraloma Life Online – June 2014

  • June Miraloma Life (PDF version)
  • MPIC Election Night with District 7 Supervisor Norman Yee 7:00 PM, June 19, 2014
  • Miraloma Park Teams Up with MIT for a Stronger Future
  • Airbnb Update: Proposed Voter Initiative
  • From the President’s Corner
  • Summary of MPIC Board Meeting of May 1, 2014
  • What’s Growing in Our Backyards?
  • From the Ingleside Station Newsletter Wednesday, April 30, 2014
  • More SF History to Share this Summer
  • Neighborhood Emergency Response Team (NERT) Update
  • Spring Fling and the Attractions of Miraloma Park*


MPIC Election Night with District 7 Supervisor Norman Yee 7:00 PM, June 19, 2014

by Dan Liberthson

On Thursday, June 19, beginning at 7 pm, District 7 Supervisor Norman Yee will join us at the MPIC Clubhouse to meet and talk to Miraloma Park neighbors, present his views, and answer questions. All members of the MPIC in good standing (having paid their annual dues by May 19) will be eligible to vote for candidates running for MPIC Director and Officer. We invite all of our members to come and vote for the candidates of their choice, and everyone in Miraloma Park to get to know Supervisor Yee and take advantage of this opportunity to learn about his activities on behalf of District 7 and the city of San Francisco. Refreshments will be served.

Following is the slate of candidates for the June 19 MPIC election.

Officers
President: Robert Gee
Vice President: Thad Sauvain
Recording Secretary: Carl Schick
Corresponding Secretary: Dan Liberthson
Treasurer: Thad Sauvain

Directors
Tim Armour
Gary Isaacson
Sue Kirkham
Cassandra Mettling-Davis
Brian Stone
KarenWood


Miraloma Park Teams Up with MIT for a Stronger Future

by Daniel Homsey

The Miraloma Park Improvement Club (MPIC) is partnering with the Massachusetts Institute of Technology’s (MIT’s) Urban Risk Lab to create a community-generated plan to build a stronger neighborhood response to emergency or disaster: Resilient Miraloma Park.

Building on the work of neighboring communities such as Diamond Heights and the Bayview, who are using the City’s Empow- ered Communities Program to craft their own resilience plans, the MPIC hopes to leverage the expertise of MIT to offer residents a world class resource to create our own plan.

The resulting strategy will offer us a roadmap to make smart and realistic investments that will ensure that during times of stress (fires, heat waves and earthquakes), not only will our neighborhood bounce back, but also our most vulnerable neighbors will not experience any unnecessary stress or hardship.

The Resilient Miraloma Park initiative will be a highly focused, professionally facilitated planning process that will generate meaningful outcomes to be implemented under the MPIC’s stewardship.  The first meeting will be on Wednesday, June 25 at Miraloma Cornerstone Baptist Church (located at Teresita and Arroyo) at 7 pm and is open to any resident who enjoys positive, innovative, and policy-based planning processes that will increase confidence in the neighborhood’s ability to come together during time of stress and look out for each other.

To learn more about Resilient Miraloma Park and the Empowered Communities Program, visit resilientmiralomapark.org and register to join this important planning community.


Airbnb Update: Proposed Voter Initiative

by Doug Engmann*

In my letter to neighborhood leaders last month, I tried to alert residents to the threat to their neighborhoods from the growing number of persons renting out their residences as hotel rooms through online travel sites like Airbnb and VRBO. These rentals are in 99% of the cases contrary to residential zoning: they constitute a commercial activity prohibited by law in areas zoned for residential use. When tenants rent their units as hotel rooms, they are also violating their apartment leases where such activity is also not allowed. Landlords, in responding to my previous letter, have also pointed out that their insurance coverage is threatened by hotel rentals in their buildings, because insurance companies will not pay if damage is caused to the building by a hotel guest and will in fact cancel the insurance coverage of the building if they learn of hotel activity in an apartment building.

Neighbors and tenants report the negative impact of having hotel rooms rented in their neighborhoods and buildings: strangers roaming around in hallways of apartment buildings, apartment keys left under front door mats for tourists, bachelorette parties in single family neighbor- hoods. We as neighborhood residents have to ask, what level, if any, of commercial activity do we want to allow in residential neighborhoods?

You should all be aware that hotel rentals are just the first of new “tech” ideas about commercializing where we live. For example, there are many new websites now facilitating persons to have “pop-up” restaurants in their homes, with patrons paying to dine at someone’s house!

A group of concerned citizens representing a broad range of community interests, including affordable housing— has filed with the Registrar of Voters our voter initiative to rein in these illegal hotel rentals in our neighborhoods. The initiative does four simple things:

(1) Requires anyone wishing to rent out a residential unit as a hotel room to register with the City, carry liability insurance covering this commercial activity, and pay the hotel tax on any revenues from that hotel rental, just as all legitimate hotels must do in San Francisco.

(2) As part of that registration process, the person requesting registration must certify that the renting of the residential unit in question complies with all San Francisco zoning, health and safety laws governing hotel rooms, and if a tenant, show proof that their landlord ap- proves of the rental.

(3) Prohibits the Board of Supervisors from rezoning the entire city to allow this short-term rental activity by rede- fining it as “residential use” and forces Airbnb and those wishing permission to operate residential units as hotel rooms to obtain the approval of the individual neighbor- hoods and Planning Commission via established and bona fide Planning Code processes.

(4) Provides for a citizen complaint process to report unregistered hotel room rentals whereby the citizen com- plaining is notified of all the proceedings that the City has to follow-up the complaint.

We are hoping that passage of the initiative will stop new hotel rentals from proliferating and force those who want to conduct this commercial activity in their neighborhood to seek permission at the Planning Commission with the input of all the citizens living in their area. We will be collecting signatures in May and June with the hope that we can put this on the ballot in November.

*Doug Engmann was formerly a City Planning Commissioner, a Member of the Board of Permit Appeals, and President of the Stanyan-Fulton Neighborhood Association.


From the President’s Corner

by Robert Gee, MPIC Board President

Update On the Housing Element: Poor Planning without an Appropriate EIR

In our March newsletter, MPIC Board Member Dan Liberthson provided an update on why MPIC opposes the city’s Revised Alternative Analysis for the 2004 and 2009 Housing Elements. The Housing Element is a policy document that consists of goals and policies to guide the City and private and non-profit developers in providing housing for existing and future residents to meet projected housing demand.

On April 24, 2014, the San Francisco Planning Commission held a hearing on certification of the environmental impact report (EIR) for the 2004 and 2009 Housing Element. MPIC Board Member Karen Breslin and I gave public testimony requesting that the Planning Commission adopt feasible alternatives that the Final EIR did not adequately consider. One of the feasible alternatives we requested was to change Policy 1.6 to state “In some areas, such as RH-1 (like Miraloma Park) and RH-2, density limits as well as existing height and bulk patterns should be maintained to protect neighborhood character.” The Final EIR did not consider this feasible alternative. This change would avoid the potentially significant impact on the quality of life in RH-1 and RH-2 neighbor- hoods from policy language that would support more than one or two units per RH-1 or RH-2 parcel, respectively.

After all public comment, Planning Commissioner An- tonini expressed his concerns about how there have been recent changes to RH-1 and RH-2 neighborhoods to allow increased density, specifically referencing Super- visor David Chiu’s recently passed illegal in-law legis- lation and also referencing the whole discussion about preserving RH-1 and RH-2 neighborhoods. Antonini said the speakers made good points and that the issue concerned him. He said that for long-established neighborhoods, such changes are threats, and that he would like to see more specific language in the Housing Element so that there isn’t a quick process to change zoning. Nota- bly, he said there is now a “de facto change of zoning all over the city” from recent legislation and that the Hous- ing Element doesn’t take density into account. The city’s Zoning Director responded that the Housing Element is just a policy statement and doesn’t change zoning, and that there is no attack on RH-1 and RH-2 zoning. Plan- ning Commissioner Moore also said she supports modification of the Housing Element to find common ground. She would like to see some footnote in the Housing Ele- ment to acknowledge that neighborhood guidelines (such as the MPIC Design Guidelines) exist as guiding ideas.

Even though Commissioners Antonini and Moore expressed concern about the impact of potential zoning changes on neighborhoods, they ended up voting with the rest of the commissioners (6-0) to approve certification of the final EIR for the Housing Element without any amendments.

The entire Housing Element package now goes to the Board of Supervisors, who can only vote yes or no on the total package.

Miraloma Playground Update
I wrote in the May newsletter that the Recreation and Park Commission (RPC) was going to appoint members to a new “Failing Playgrounds Task Force” to identify project criteria and provide recommendations to RPC on playgrounds that are a priority for renovation with 2012 Clean and Safe Neighborhood Parks bond funds. $15.5 million of bond funds were allocated to failing playgrounds.

In order to provide up-to-date information on the state of the city’s most beleaguered playgrounds to the Failing Playgrounds Task Force, the SF Parks Alliance (SFPA) and the Rec and Park Department conducted site surveys of the playgrounds that were graded C, D and F in the 2012 Playground Report Card. Miraloma Playground had received a “D” in that 2012 report. Thirty-three playgrounds, including Miraloma Playground, were sur- veyed between October 2013 and March 2014 to see if the playgrounds’ conditions had improved, remained the same, or deteriorated.

SFPA has just released its 2014 Playground Reassessment Report, in which it upgraded Miraloma Playground from a D to C. Regardless of this upgrade, our communi- ty needs to organize, strongly advocate for funding, and consider all options that will lead to the renovation of the Miraloma Playground. I want to thank the neighbors who have contacted the MPIC to express their support and to volunteer. You will be hearing from me shortly. But we are looking for additional neighbors who would like to commit their time to work on this. MPIC Board Member Daniel Homsey will help lead this group of volunteers. If you are interested, please email us at miralomapark@gmail.com or leave us a voice message at 281-0892.


Summary of MPIC Board Meeting of May 1, 2014

by Dan Liberthson

Treasurer’s Report (T Sauvain): Net worth in April in- creased by $2314 from March ($30,442 vs $28,128) on increased rental income ($5790 vs $2840 vs $3100 in April 2013). We received $299 in membership dues in April. The current reserve total is $14,448. We now use PayPal for all rental deposits and fees, which has cut down on time spent chasing checks and checking the mailbox. To offset fees associated with this, we raised our single-event rental rates for members ($525 to $550) and non-members ($750 to $790). During April, we paid $84.58 in PayPal fees.

In March, we instituted a “progressive fee schedule” that will charge renters progressively more if they do not clean up after each of their rentals, and result in cancel- lation of their agreements if they do not clean up after their rentals more than four times. This has cut back on complaints from renters about not finding the Clubhouse clean and in good condition.

Committees: Membership (R Gee)—MPIC had 435 members on April 30. Meeting planned to discuss mem- bership push. Streets and Transportation (K Breslin)—D Homsey mentioned that legislation for stop signs and crosswalks in Miraloma Park and elsewhere could hap- pen in May.

Clubhouse Maintenance (K Rawlins)— Motion by K Rawlins to spend up to $500 on new chairs and bridge tables approved 8-0. She will seek contrac- tor to fix window ropes so windows will stay open.

Planning (K Breslin for T Armour)—K Breslin and C Mettling-Davis attended Pre-Application meeting at 31 El Sereno. Proposal to add two decks. Privacy concerns. Housing Element approved by Planning Commission (Gee and Breslin attended meeting). K Breslin, R Gee, K Wood attended Board of Supes hearing on Chiu illegals proposal (which passed). R Gee will have ZAP com- mittee work on Airbnb legislation in coordination with WOTPCC.

Safety (Committee)—Burglary on 300 block of Marietta; 2 suspects detained. Community impact statement letter sent to DA re: robbery/beating of Juanita resident K Hensley. 124 Molimo marijuana grow house action by authorities still pending (since Jan 6). Owner notified by letter to two addresses. Discussed requesting meeting with Police Captain and City Attorney re 124 Molimo. Discussed request to meet with principals of SOTA re youth behavior problems.

Resiliency (R Gee for D Homsey)—K Wood, D Homsey, and R Gee met with program designers. Kick-off community meeting scheduled at Cornerstone Trinity Baptist Church on June 25 to get input from public about what they think are risks. Comment that NERT relatively inactive. R Gee, K Wood and D Homsey meeting May 22 with MIT for planning. July 23 and August 30 community meetings scheduled. Motion to spend up to $300 for refreshments at June 25 meeting approved 8-0. R Gee to contact P Jackson and try to kickstart more NERT activity. NERT Schedule to be published monthly in newsletter if Bill Jeong, current NERT leader, provides it.

Events (R Gee for S Chu)— Motion to fund Spring Fling up to $1400 for taco truck, extra clubhouse cleaning, beverages, rental chairs, ap- proved 8-0.

Nominating Committee (K Wood)—Committee formed (K Wood, C Schick, D Homsey). Supe Yee to present and discuss at June 19 election night. Motion to spend up to $300 for refreshments on MPIC election night approved 8-0. D Liberthson and K Rawlins to be at Clubhouse for nominations from floor 7:30-8 pm May 15.

Community Organizations: Coalition for SF Neighbor- hoods (K Breslin)—Marina Green stopped a restaurant on the green. Petition started to request reappointment of two Planning Commission members. SF-PUC Water task force reports planned increases in rates. Motion: urging SF-PUC to scale back forecasted expansion of policy expenditures. Motion urging Planning Commission to take no action and continue public hearings on the proposed legislation affecting P-zoned districts, which would enable and encourage private commercial use of public spaces. West of Twin Peaks Central Council (K Wood)— Airbnb discussed, Mirkarimi discussed underpopulation at the Jail so he closed one unit; charter high school in the Jail and CCSF vocational training. Possible increase in collaboration between Sheriff’s Dept and the SFPD to save costs. SF Sheriff site: www.sfsheriff.com.

Old Business: For Participatory budget, 33 projects submitted and 15 selected for vote, 3 local, including Sunny- side Park renovations and island at O’Shaughnessy-Del Vale. Recreation and Park taskforce assessing which playgrounds get improvement funding. R Gee working with CFSN for progress on undergrounding utilities.


What’s Growing in Our Backyards?

by Denise Louie

How can Gardeners Help Combat Drought?

California native plants are environmentally appropriate for wildlife as well as for our climate. California is one of only five places in the world with a Mediterranean climate, or wet winters and dry summers. Once your native plants have established their root systems, you can let them go dry in dry months or water only occasionally. Native wildflowers, grasses, shrubs, and even trees know how to survive on their own, absent human interference.

In view of our current drought situation, I think it be- hooves us to consider using less fresh water. One obvious way is to convert our thirsty lawns to environmentally appropriate plants; a native plant garden requires about one-fifth the water (and one-fourth the maintenance labor) needed for a lawn. Another way to save water is to use greywater (defined below). I plan to have Casey Allen (former Miraloma Clubhouse gardener) re- place my uncle’s lawn with native plants and hook up his washing machine to his backyard. Helping friends and family to conserve is a good thing!

To reduce the use of freshwater in my garden, I harvest rainwater and repurpose greywater. I water mostly by hand, seldom by hose. Hand watering uses only one- sixth as much water as sprinklers. Besides, using a hose or sprinklers encourages too many weeds.

Greywater Action holds workshops for us to learn about harvesting rainwater at home and installing pipes for greywater. Info for upcoming workshops is at www.greywateraction.org/workshop/2014/rain-barrel-workshop-hands-oakland.

For a quick peek into installing pipes, see This Old House’s video about connecting a washing machine in a SF home to the garden. Greywater consultant Laura Allen (of Greywater Action) installs high density polyethylene pipes, T’s, mulch, and irrigation valve boxes in gardens. See www.thisoldhouse.com/toh/tv/asktoh/video/020565323,00.html.

Take advantage of SF-PUC’s offer to subsidize a starter kit for hooking up your washing machine to your garden. Contact the Urban Farmer Store at (415) 661-2204 to sign up for a workshop in order to qualify for the subsidy. You’d need to sign an application and provide photos of your washer and your garden. I submitted my app and photos via email. After the 2-hour workshop at 2833 Vicente/ 40th Ave., I paid $15 (including tax) for $117 worth of pipes and other supplies. Hint: You can do this without a permit, as long as you follow the guidelines.

If you need help to install the pipes or to convert lawn to native plants, you can contact Casey Allen and Brett Stephens, San Francisco Landscapes, (415) 585-9137.

This is a great website detailing what’s OK and what’s harmful in terms of soaps: greywateraction.org/faqs/greywater-recycling. Hint: Environment-friendly soaps should be OK for both human use and plants. Examples include Oasis, Ecos, Biopac, Vaska, Aubrey Organics, Dr. Bronner’s. Avoid salt, boron, borax, and chlorine bleach, and wash water from diapers and oily rags, all of which are harmful to plants. Be careful with powder soaps, which at least in the past included sodium fillers that are potentially harmful to plants. www.cosmeticdatabase.org can help you determine whether a specific soap is harmful.

What is greywater? Feel free to re-use greywater from showers, bathtubs, sinks, and washing machines, fol- lowing suggestions in the previous paragraph. Kitchen wastewater is tricky; avoid high levels of organic mate- rial, which could decrease oxygen levels where the grey- water is applied. And avoid introducing pathogens, such as bacteria from rinsing uncooked meat. If you collect any greywater, use it in the garden within 24 hours.

In summary, we should all revise our approach to our dry summers and recurring droughts by

• Converting our lawns to native plants

• Harvesting rainwater

• Using greywater, including connecting the washing machine to the garden, and

• Encouraging friends and family to do 1-3.

***
In April, I had an inspirational experience at Edgewood Park and Preserve in Redwood City. I saw fields of native wildflowers. At one point, within a 10 foot radius, I saw at least a dozen different species, including larkspur, purple sannicle, and goldfields. I imagined the love of nature John Muir must have felt when he first walked through California. That was before we built so many farms, introduced non-native weeds like yellow star thistle and French broom, and in so many other ways degraded the land. It is a sad thing to see degraded land when you know what once was. Volunteers have been restoring land at the Preserve. We can all help in our own locations.

Native plants are the basis for natural ecosystems, which include wildlife, water cycles, nutrient cycles, and more. Our lifestyles can adversely impact ecosystems. For example, at Edgewood Park and Preserve, the Bay checker- spot butterfly once numbered in the many thousands. But they blinked out. Scientists discovered that automobile exhaust from nearby Highway 280 caused nitrogen to be deposited on the land, making it more favorable for nonnative grasses to move in. These grasses outcompeted butterfly plants like plantain and owl’s clover. So butterfly larvae had no food. In recent years, naturalists have been reintroducing Bay Checkerspot Butterflies from San Jose, coupled with an ongoing mowing of nonnative grasses at appropriate times.

Nitrogen deposition and other aspects of our everyday lives have an adverse impact on natural areas in San Francisco, too. (Greg Gaar, in his book A Natural History of San Francisco, notes that there once were fields of wildflowers in the City—but we can’t see what we’ve paved over and destroyed.) We can mitigate these negative impacts if we choose to. The choice is based less on what we want, more on our obligation to future generations and what our environment needs.

Top reasons to change our lifestyle include:
• Caring about species other than our own, including native plants and animals.
• Concern about the future of our environment. • Our moral responsibilities: we are stewards of Nature.

Here are some ideas for mitigating the adverse impacts of our everyday lives on native plants and the animals that depend on them:
• Reduce/minimize the use of natural resources, including water, gasoline and purchases of things other than food.
• Manage the land where we live, by removing weeds to green bins and planting local native plants.
• Persuade our neighbors to do the same. Good neighbors will keep their weeds from spreading to other yards and public open spaces.

We can also help mitigate negative lifestyle impacts on nature by volunteering to care for specific sites. If anyone would like to join Friends of Glen Canyon Park volunteers on either Wednesdays or Saturdays, call Jean Conner at 584-8576. Or, contact the Natural Areas Program, David Burnet, at 871-0203 or david.burnet@sfgov.org.

A great way to become educated about local native plants is to join the California Native Plant Society (CPNS), Yerba Buena Chapter. Visit www.cnps-yerbabuena.org/ to join and learn about enjoyable educational events. The Ninth Annual CNPS Yerba Buena Chapter Spring Tour of Native Plant Gardens in April was a big success, with many visitors to gardens on Mt. Davidson. Congratulations to our native plant gardeners!


From the Ingleside Station Newsletter Wednesday, April 30, 2014

8:30 am 300 Blk Marietta Burglary

A vigilant neighbor helped nab two burglary suspects early this morning. The neighbor told Officers Sullivan and Padilla that he happened to be looking out his front window when he saw an unfamiliar looking SUV parked in front of his neighbor’s driveway. He then saw one subject lingering around the driver side of the vehicle. The neighbor was suspicious, so he grabbed his camera and started taking pictures of the subject vehicle and the license plates. The neighbor then decided to go and open his garage door to take a closer look. While standing in the open garage he heard what sounded like wood breaking from the back of his neighbor’s house. Fearing his neighbor was being burglarized, he immediately called the police. Several units, including Officers Leong, Tillan, Ng, Chang, Wong, Hopkins, Uang, Wilson and Sergeant McDevitt quickly responded to the burglary in progress and set up a perimeter. Officers Chang and Wong made their way to the back of the house and came in contact with one of the suspects as he was trying to make his escape. Suffice it to say he was taken into custody. A second suspect was caught by Officer Tillan and Ng hiding by a parked vehicle just down the block. Both suspects were identified as the burglars and taken to Ingleside Station where they each were booked on several felony charges. The suspect vehicle was towed from the scene. Report Number: 140357816

Update: Two suspects are in custody charged with out- standing warrants, burglary, resisting arrest.

The MPIC very gratefully thanks the great Marietta neighbor who observed suspicious activity and took action, on behalf of all of us—by calling the police.


More SF History to Share this Summer

by Kathy Rawlins

As the last Miraloma Life issue was dedicated to the neighborhood’s history, I thought I’d follow up with some more. As we go into summer vacation many of us will be traveling. We often tell people where we’re from and about SF, but we don’t always tell people about our great neighborhood and the MPIC. So if you are meet- ing and talking to people, a good topic of conversation would be how terrific our neighborhood is, and some of its history. For example, the developers (the Meyer Brothers) built and donated Miraloma Park Elementary School, which is now a top school in the City, with massive parental participation, special programs on nature (native plant and vegetable gardens, making meals of the vegetables, raising and caring for chickens and har- vesting their eggs). The Meyer Brothers also built and donated the Miraloma Park Clubhouse, which has been a focal point for the neighborhood since the 1930s, hosting community and private events.

The events of the early days included a celebration of the first bus that went to the top of the residential area of Mt. Davidson. The mayor and a band sent it on its way during the ceremony held at the Portola Strip where Tower Market is. We have a 40-acre park atop the neigh- borhood, and not many people can boast of living in a world-class metropolis and where coyotes, skunks, rac- coons and opossums still roam the parks and streets. Fill listeners in on the history of the Mt. Davidson cross. Over 100 feet tall, it was first lit by President Franklin Roosevelt, who threw a switch in Washington to start the current in SF. The cross was perhaps more famously the location of a key scene in the first Dirty Harry film, in which the murderer finally gets his comeuppance. I would not have wanted to be that villain, running pell- mell down a steep slope fraught with blackberries and their thorns (ouch!). This story is a great ice-breaker for new neighbors in the neighborhood, and you can make them feel even more welcome by showing them the trails, woods, wild flowers, and raptors, as well as the view out to the Marin headlands and the Bay Bridge, which can be seen from Mt. Davidson’s summit without the tour-buses and their fumes that spoil the scenery atop Twin Peaks.

Also of interest to travelers, as well as new neighbors, are several small community parks, created by neighborhood volunteers, that have replaced what were weedy lots. These include a lovely garden at Detroit and Mel- rose, another at the top of Los Palmos, and the Native Plant Garden in front of the MPIC Clubhouse. Lastly, don’t forget to mention the wonderful musicals and other performances by talented students at the Ruth Asawa SF School of the Arts, right next door to Miraloma Park. Where else can you get first-rate, very affordable artistic productions so close to home, and free parking too! Indeed, the many attractions of our neighborhood make it hard to travel away for long, and a pleasure to return.


Neighborhood Emergency Response Team (NERT) Update

by Bill Jeong, District 7 NERT Coordinator

October 2014 will mark the 25th anniversary of the Loma Prieta Earthquake. Rather than our traditional October Neighborhood drills, NERT will hold a Citywide Drill and a Hardly Strictly NERT Maker Fair on October 18 (save the date; location to be announced). Be part of the Fair! If there’s been a disaster preparedness idea, tip, design, or invention you thought too small or crazy to mention before—now’s your chance. Please submit your ideas, tips, designs, and inventions by email (attach proj- ect photos and/or pdf files) to Nora Matulich at ideas2014octdrill@yahoo.com by June 1. Lt. Arteseros and the NERT Advisory Board will make the final deci- sion; if your idea is chosen, you’ll be notified by email prior to the event.

SFFD NERT Communicator Training: Communications are a vital role of NERT teams. Starting in 2014, the formal NERT Communication Team (NCT) training will include NCT101 through 601. NERT volunteers with an amateur radio license who complete the six train- ing sessions will be added to the SFFD NERT formal list of communicators. Get your HAM License (fee, $30) at Bay Area Educational Amateur Radio Society; visit www.baears.com. For more information about communicator training and all other NERT activities, visit http://www.sf-fire.org/index.aspx?page=860.

June NERT Training Calendar Summary: Mondays
(Marina/Cow Hollow, St. Mary the Virgin, 2325 Union St @ Steiner)—6/2, 6:30-10 pm: Class 4; 6/9, 6:30- 9:30 pm: Class 5; 6/16, 6:30-10 pm: Class 6. Register at http://bit.ly/PyGmdK. Tuesdays (Bernal Heights, St. Kevin Church, 702 Cortland Ave)—6/10, 6:30-10 pm: Class 1; 6/17, 6:30-10 pm: Class 2; 6/24, 6:30-9:30 pm: Class 3; 7/1, 6:30-10 pm: Class 4; 7/8, 6:30-9:30 pm: Class 5; 7/15, 6:30-10 pm: Class 6. Register at http://bit. ly/1j8BdER (new students) or http://bit.ly/1kT8YcD (recertification)

Personal Readiness for a Resilient Community: a one-time workshop for you and your family and neigh- bors to learn skills to handle emergencies big or small and boost resiliency after a disaster (presented by SFFD, NERT, and SFSAFE)—Wed, June 4, Sunnyside Community Center, 1654 Sunnydale Ave. (enroll at http://bit. ly/1g1oi8m) or Wed, June 11, Richmond Library Branch, 351 9th Ave (enroll at http://bit.ly/1gRWsEC).


Spring Fling and the Attractions of Miraloma Park*

by Dan Liberthson and Robert Gee

Though MPIC’s Spring Fling was on a cold, windy day, 75 Miraloma Park residents, lured by the taco truck and a chance to mingle with neighbors and make friends, braved the weather. Many new residents, some with young kids who adored the bouncy house, visited the Clubhouse for the first time, and no one left hungry. For new residents as well as established Miralomans, this event was a good opportunity to reflect on the nearly 100-year history of our neighborhood that led to the blessings we enjoy. How and why did the scenic neighborhood of Miraloma Park come to exist?

At the start of the 20th century, a revolution in city planning, the City Beautiful movement, held that citizens would benefit mentally, physically, and spiritually from well-planned cities with broad, landscaped boulevards radiating from the center, carefully placed commercial and other use districts, new parks, and new residential neighborhoods modeled after English garden cities. In 1905, SF Mayor Phelan wanted to rebuild the city in this manner, but after the big Quake uncontrolled rebuilding scotched these plans.

The legacy of the City Beautiful movement is now found not downtown but in residential neighborhoods west of Twin Peaks. These hillside developments featured curvi- linear streets and terraced hills to preserve the views and sunlight afforded by hillside settings, and included abundant foliage. Completion of the Twin Peaks tunnel in 1917 eased access to the western area and made development feasible. Miraloma Park was built starting in 1926 and ending in the 1950s. Conceived as a “suburb within the City” and a planned community, Miraloma Park was promoted as a scenic place of rolling hills, a modestly priced area of backyard farmers with ample open space, peace, and quiet. The idea of a planned community was so important to the developers that they completed a Clubhouse for the MPIC (which they donated in 1936) and built an elementary school in the late 1930s.

In the 1920s, the Parent-Teachers Association of Commodore Sloat School and their allies fought off plans to build roads and a reservoir atop Mt. Davidson and saved the forest as undeveloped space that became a 39.4-acre city park. This early battle to preserve our mountain-top park generated a strong sense of community that persists today in the dedication of our 2200 households, represented by the MPIC, to preserving our parklike surroundings, single-family zoning, and architecture compatible with the amenities the original developers envisioned.

*The historical portion of this article is condensed from the Miraloma Park Residential Design Guidelines, developed by the MPIC and approved by the SF Planning Commission in 1999, and available in full at miralomapark.org.