The Attempted Homicide of a Sanctuary
UPDATE 4/14/2010: Via Matt Baume, from StreetsBlog:
The PUC … proposes to terminate the creek in a manufactured wetland at the western end of Islais Creek Channel. The area is currently an asphalt lot just down the street from the headquarters of Mythbusters, used occasionally to store vehicles.
This would be a fantastic and appropriate honor for this spot. (And there is still more than just asphalt here!)
Once upon a time in 2001, there was a tiny plot of shoreline, Muwekma Ohlone Park and Wildlife Sanctuary, named after the native people who once populated the San Francisco peninsula. Guerrilla gardeners had, for years, nurtured this vestige of unlikely marshland amidst the industrial zone near Hunters Point.
More after the jump…
It became home to a cute, singing frog; some birds; and was an outdoor classroom for local children to learn a lesson about the original state of our land (and the hideous invulnerability of “The Octopus“).
And then, on Thanksgiving Day of that same year, MUNI busted a sewer main, flooding the park with shit. They brought out the bulldozers and covered it up, destroying a third of the small plot.
In 2005, MUNI struck again, this time trying to burrow under the channel for the sake of its T-Third Street expansion of mayhem, and turned what remained of the “pocket park” back into a turd puddle.
Again, the bulldozers. Again, loss of habitat.
Four years later, the T-Third line is up and running and the Muwekma pocket park is long gone. What does the spot look like now?
As of October 4th, 2009, it’s clear that there is still an impressive act of nature happening here. Remnants of marsh remain, enough that I saw birds hunting for fish, and you can clearly see in the above shot that vegetation, including pickle weed and myrtle, refuses to yield to the pollution.
Suck it, bulldozers.
The site is presently inaccessible to the public, and can only be reached by hopping the guard rail of the Illinois Street bridge and climbing down the industrial fence. (It can be a bitch getting back up.) It looks like it’s currently used by skaters or junkies, or skater junkies.