Saturday, March 14, 2009

Third Street may be renamed for Willie Brown

The Bayview Hunters Point community and its neighbors are just now hearing the news that Third Street, the major surface street that defines much of the Southeast Sector, may be renamed as part of Mayor Gavin Newsom's birthday gift to former Mayor and California Assembly Speaker Willie Brown, Jr.

Today's San Francisco Chronicle reports that "Newsom and his staff have been working quietly behind the scenes to drum up support and got Supervisor Sophie Maxwell to carry the legislation."

The renaming will require the Board of Supervisor's support, and is sure to raise a host of questions. Many San Franciscan's recall the renaming of "Army Street" to "Cesar Chavez Blvd," which remains a contentious issue in some pockets of the city.

It wouldn't be the first time for the renaming of Bayview's main drag. According to the Bayview History Preservation Project, Third Street was once known as Railroad Avenue in reference to the street cars that connected the neighborhood to the City's downtown, and to the Southern Pacific Railroad which was a defining feature of the area until the 1950's. Before it was called "Railroad Avenue," the road was known as "Hunters Point Blvd."

Bayview was embroiled in controversy over the renaming of streets in the early part of the last century when Father O'Sullivan of All Hallows Parish protested naming a street for Revolutionary War-era patriot Thomas Paine who O'Sullivan considered to be an athiest and an "infidel."

4 comments:

Anonymous said...

I adamantly oppose of renaming 3rd Street for former mayor Willie Brown... Brown to me was always a politians' politian. He always spoke out of two sides of his mouth. He made the sitiuation with drugs and drug related crimes even worse in the Bayview by being too gentle on the "criminals". Now to this day there is all a too relaxed attitude concerning drugs and drug related crimes and the police dept. turn a blind eye, while our streets are being loitered with drug dealers/users and prostitutes. No thank you to Willie Brown.

PTDTS said...

I second the motion to leave the name and have the city focus on more pressing matters in the neighborhood.

rhonda winter said...

This is a wretched horrible idea and an utter waste of scarce resources. Third Street needs many things, such as a safe well designed bike lane, not hundreds of thousands of dollars wasted on replacing signage to honor a fatuous blowhard who did little for the Bayview when he was mayor. This proposal makes me sick.

dezibsf said...

No Way, No Way. Willie Brown is no hero to the Bayview Hunters Point like Cesar Chavez is to the Mission District. Sophie Maxwell, Gavin Newsom and Willie Brown need to butt out on this and focus on some real improvements on 3rd St.