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robertogreco : westportal   2

West Portal - FoundSF
"The West Portal shopping and residential district takes its name from the Twin Peaks Tunnel, which ushered in streetcar service to the southeast corner of San Francisco in 1918. MUNI streetcar service opened San Francisco's last great wilderness to residential development. Formerly sand dunes and vegetable farms, today West Portal is the area bounded by Portola, Kensington, Taraval, and 15th Avenue. High quality homes on detached lots lead to rapid growth in the 1920s and set the stage for West Portal to become the commercial and transportation hub for the West of Twin Peaks area.

In Spanish times, West Portal was part of the land holdings of Mission de Dolores. After the break up of the Missions, Jose de Jesus Noe was granted a 4,443 acre ranch in 1846, called Rancho San Miguel. The ranch ran from present day UCSF in Parnassus Heights to San Jose Avenue, south to Daly City and north to Juniper Serra Boulevard and Forest Hill, including the area of present day West Portal. Parts of the ranch east of Twin Peals were subdivided in the late 1800s and became Noe Valley, Eureka Valley, Fairmont Heights, and Sunnyside.

But West Portal remained a ranch until well after the 20th Century. Adolph Sutro bought the remnant of the original rancho in 1880 -- a 1,200-acre parcel that ran from present day UCSF, south along Stanyan Street, up over Twin Peaks due south roughly along present-day Ridgewood Avenue, continuing south to the Ocean View district, then north along Junipero Serra Boulevard to the Laguna Honda reservoir.

While most of the ranch was hilly, the area that later became West Portal was relatively flat, and Sutro rented it to Italian vegetable farmers. For the next 35 years, the rest of Rancho San Miguel remained a nature preserve. Sutro's passion for tree planting eventually covered the slopes of Mt. Sutro and Mt. Davidson as far south as Ocean Avenue with eucalyptus.

When the rancho was put up for sale in 1909 after a contentious battle over Sutro's will, the City was desperate to recover from the 1906 earthquake and fire. City boosters badly wanted to compete with new subdivisions being built on the Peninsula and in the East Bay. The Burnham plan of 1905 and the City Beautiful Movement called for respecting the contours of the land and incorporating landscaping into residential developments. It was no longer acceptable to pack houses tightly together on rectangular street grids that ignored the terrain.

The first neighborhoods to be developed, St Francis Wood and Forest Hill in 1912, were faithful to these new ideas and were carefully designed and built as "residential parks." Both developments prohibited commercial activities and were made up exclusively of large homes from the Craftsman movement, the Chicago school, the prairie style of Frank Lloyd right, the Beaux-Arts, and other styles. In contrast, West Portal became a commercial and transportation hub with homes in a wide variety of architectural styles."
sanfrancisco  westportal  history  classideas  2003  richardbrandi  tunnels  construction  muni  transportation 
december 2017 by robertogreco
Western Neighborhoods Project - San Francisco History
"The Western Neighborhoods Project is a nonprofit organization formed in 1999 to preserve and share the history and culture of the neighborhoods in western San Francisco.

Our mission is to record your personal memory, copy your photographs, and help unearth the story of your local business, school, club or place of worship.

This Web site features images and historical articles related to the city's "Outside Lands". If you're interested in the Richmond, Sunset, West of Twin Peaks, OMI or Lake Merced districts (and the micro-neighborhoods they encompass), start browsing through our menu to learn more.

Our primary objectives and purposes are:

• to research the history of the western neighborhoods of San Francisco in the interest of preservation and community education.
• to promote and make accessible to the public, the rich and diverse stories of the western neighborhoods of San Francisco.
• to solicit oral histories, photos, and historical items pertaining to the western neighborhoods of San Francisco for cataloguing and preservation in appropriate institutions, such as the San Francisco History Center at the San Francisco Main Library.
• to build awareness of the cultural diversity that created the western neighborhoods of San Francisco."
sanfrancisco  history  innersunset  outersunset  innerrichmond  outerrichmond  sfsh  classideas  outsidelands  lakemerced  oceanview  mercedheights  ingleside  ceanview  inglesideterraces  lakeside  parkerced  stonestown  lakeshore  westportal  foresthill  balboaterrace  westwoodpark  miralomapark  midtownterrace  sherwoodforest  sunnyside  stfranciswood  goldengateheights  parkwayterrace  parkside  seacliff  predifioterrace  richmonddistrict  sunsetdistrict 
april 2017 by robertogreco

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