More than 40 people made San Francisco a greener city Saturday by turning grey to green at the corner of Turk and Lyon in NOPA. Friends, neighbors, and members of St. Cyprian's Episcopal Church came together for a long day in the dirt -- digging out sand and, unexpectedly, clay from below the newly exposed concrete sidewalk strips, adding 40 bags of new soil, settling in nearly 100 plants, and topping the new beds with fir bark. From start to finish a solid 8 hour day for those who remained to celebrate the tapping down of the last Berkeley sedge. A green lunch fueled volunteers mid-day along with live music.
St. Cyprian's Church and NOPA neighbors initiated the project last year during a Design Lab that developed proposals for how the church and community might work together more closely on neighborhood projects. One of the ideas was to green the sidewalks, making the corner where St. Cyprian's is situated more inviting and sustainable. In the months that followed students from the University of San Francisco undertook research of the city's permeable sidewalk permit process. This spring the Green Turk & Lyon Project was launched to take the project to completion.
Neighbors pitched in right away. James Munden, Senior Landscape Architect with Marta Fry Landscape Associates, developed drawings of how the Turk and Lyon might look a bit more green. Intrigued with the possibilities, more than 60 people contributed to a fundraiser at Chile Pies restaurant in May while others donated in the following weeks. St. Cyprian's completed the city's application process, paid the permit fee, and received permission to get the project underway in mid-July. Last Saturday volunteers pushed the project to completion.
Of the many who made the Green L(a)unch possible, special thanks to Marta Fry Landscape Associates, Duncan Ramsay for the terrific poster image, The Wigg Party, Yerba Buena Community Accupuncture, John Dennis, San Francisco Recreation & Parks Department, Department of Public Works Bureau of Urban Forestry, the California Jug Band Association, Erich Sylvester, Will Greene, and Kelsey Schleusener.