SF Community Youth Rally in Front of MTA Demanding Director to Give Up Land
FOR IMMEDIATE RELEASE
July 26th, 2012
SF Community Youth Rally in Front of MTA
Demanding Director to Give Up Land
MTA Director expected to announce support for transforming Balboa Park Upper Yard from parking lot to affordable housing for District 11 families
(San Francisco, Ca) Following a meeting between Communities United for Health and Justice (CUHJ) and Director Reiskin on July 19th, the alliance of community organizations has gained support from the MTA Director for the long-anticipated affordable housing plan. Despite receiving his verbal support, the group still needs him to start the process of transferring ownership of the Balboa Park Upper Yard from the SFMTA to the Mayor’s Office of Housing (MOH) as the next major step in implementing the project.
To ensure this happens, a youth led rally will be held by CUHJ and Chinese Progressive Association on July 26th, 1pm in front of the SFMTA home office 1 South Van Ness Ave. Both, Director Reiskin, Supervisor Avalos, and over a hundred youth and adults from the Latin American, Chinese, Filipino, and African American communities are confirmed to attend and speak.
For nearly two years, the SFMTA has blocked movement of the affordable housing plan due to a potential need for train parking in the future. However, in the meeting between Reiskin and the alliance, the director expressed his belief that the MTA would not need the land in the near future and agreed that affordable housing was more important than a parking lot.
“It was good to hear Reiskin say that MTA did not need the land, now we need him to back up his words with action, said Jacqueline Cruz a Latino youth residing in the Excelsior.”
CUHJ is expecting Reiskin to announce his support for moving the project forward at the rally but in addition will pressure him to publically recommend to the MTA board of directors to transfer ownership of the land to MOH as well as put the issue up for vote within the next three months.
“Affordable housing is exactly what we need,” said Arlie Calaunan, a Filipino youth living in the Excelsior. “I live with eight family members in a one-bedroom and one-bathroom apartment.”
CUHJ which comprises of Coleman Advocates for Children and Youth, the Filipino Community Center, and People Organized to Demand Environmental and Economic Rights have published a report, in collaboration with Asian Neighborhood Design, which documents the development of the affordable housing plan and proposes solutions to several concerns regarding the project. The report entitled, “Home is Where the Heart Is: A People-Powered Community Vision for the Balboa Park Upper Yard, Excelsior District” can be accessed on the link below.
CUHJ plans to officially release the report in the near future in preparation for an anticipated SFMTA Board of Directors vote on the issue of transferring ownership of the land to MOH.###
Download: “Home is Where the Heart Is:A People-Powered Community Vision for the Balboa Park Upper Yard, Excelsior District” A CUHJ Report.