On June 1, the San Francisco Recreation and Parks Department announced that Palega Recreation Center and Boeddeker Park are both recipients of the American Institute of Architecture (AIA) San Francisco’s Design Awards 2015.
Palega Playground, a Portola District favorite, offers the perfect balance of indoor and outdoor recreation space to local residents. As a direct result of the community’s efforts we gave this 80-year-old park and playground a $21 million makeover with 2008 Clean and Safe Neighborhood Parks Bond funds.
Park users and the local community helped mold what is one of our biggest renovation efforts of the Neighborhood Parks Program. We provided a newly renovated recreation center, children’s play area, and athletic courts that give park users even better places to play. We also restored existing roads and pathways and improved irrigation, lighting, and park accessibility to ensure a safer, more convenient community center that will stand the test of time.
Boeddeker Park was also awarded. At the heart of San Francisco’s Tenderloin district, Boeddeker Park serves the city neighborhood with the greatest number of families living below the poverty line. Within walking distance of 50,000 people—many of them living in single rooms—Boeddeker has a critical role to play in providing recreational space in the city’s densest neighborhood. But for years, the park’s inhospitable design and minimal amenities discouraged visitors and raised safety concerns among both neighbors and law enforcement. The community was committed to making sure the neighborhood got the park it deserves.
The San Francisco Design Awards recognizes now the outstanding architectural achievements of Bay Area individuals and organizations. The American Institute of Architects, San Francisco Chapter, one of the largest of the AIA’s nearly 300 chapters nation wide, represents more than 2,000 members in San Francisco and Marin County.