Noe Valley Voice May 2007

Letters to the Editor

Preserve Old Trees Too


I recently read a posting about a tree removal for a disability access at Alvarado School at 625 Douglass Street. The notice was on a phone poll. I could not see a tree with the tag. But the tree on Douglass next to the new blue zone for the disability ramp is the largest tree in front of the school and the largest tree within two blocks. If this is the tree, I'm not sure why it needs to go, as there appears to be plenty of open access to the disability ramp. If more room is required, certainly some accommodation can be made.

As we are planting trees on and around 24th Street--a great thing to happen in Noe Valley--I hope we can also prevent the loss of some of our older trees when with a little effort solutions to save them can be found.

Ray Bruijnes

Noe Valley resident

How to Turn the J-Church Around


Rather than improve service on the J-Church streetcar line, Muni has chosen to extend the line to Caltrain, causing even longer waits.

I have e-mailed Muni numerous times with a simple suggestion: turn most of the cars around at 30th Street instead of sending them out to Balboa Park, a segment that has few passengers. Jennifer Ulbrich, the Muni contact person in your story ["City Aims to Get J-Church Back on Track," April 2007 Voice], handled my e-mail regarding this matter the same way that others at Muni have dealt with it--no response.

By the way, a Muni operator suggested a simple fix to the fiasco with the J and T lines: Return the J-Church to its former end at the Embarcadero Station. Return the N-Judah to Caltrain. Have the T­Third Street line end at Caltrain.

This would end the new tie-ups underground, along with the problem at Caltrain, where passengers now have to run across an intersection to catch a train.

George Grapman

Gambier Street

Not Enough Notice of Designs on 24th Street


I read your article regarding the long-range design plan for Noe Valley [April 2007]. How nice it was of those select 45 people to judge what will be good for Noe Valley's future. Might I ask who these people were and how they got to decide how city streets--and this is a city neighborhood, not a suburban township--should be shaped?

I was at a CBD meeting where the designs, with some great ideas like the environmentally astute sidewalks, were shown, but heard no word of any forums in November and December. Where were notices posted? Were there mailings? There should have been both.

While the CBD has hard-working members, many neighbors who are not property or business owners in the defined business district will be affected by plans such as these. Odd, isn't it, that a Community Benefit District should ignore much of the community.

Mary McFadden

24th Street

A Knitter of Community


Dean Bistline, the man who sat in the bay window on my corner of Church Street every day since I've lived here, with his miraculously non-trite and non-tacky quotes on the windows, his endless gifts of chocolate and champagne, and much more importantly, his wave, salute, kowtow--whatever he thought fitting for the day, every time I came or went--passed away on Sunday, April 15.

His business card, which hangs on our wall, lists his occupation as "octogenarian," but it was really editor, writer, and knitter of community, in small but enormously important ways.

With his leaving we have lost a part of Noe Valley's soul.

Dana Eckhoff

Across from Dean's house