Neighbors, volunteers and Rec & Park clean up Park Presidio greenway

USF students helped clean and plant along the Park Presidio greenway on March 22. Photo by phoca2004

This past Saturday, SF Recreation and Parks held a planting day on the 500 block of 14th Avenue, between Anza and Balboa. The planting event put in new trees and shrubs along the Park Presidio greenway meant to help repopulate the barrier on the side that faces the roadway.

Nearby residents of the greenway, Rec & Park staff, as well as students from the University of San Francisco’s Psychology Department and the Student Conservation Association came out to help with the planting.

The greenway along Park Presidio Boulevard has long been a source of frustration for residents due to its neglect. Historically, the greenway becomes overgrown due to lack of maintenance, making it an ideal hiding place for unauthorized camping and loitering.

However in the past six months, SF Recreation & Parks has put more effort into clearing out the pathways of the park. Just this past Friday, a large section of the greenbelt on the 600 block of 14th Avenue was finally cleared out.

The clearouts help eliminate many of the nooks and crannies where campers frequent, and for the first time in many years, neighbors along the greenbelt feel more safe and secure about their park.

“This is the most optimistic I’ve felt about our neighborhood in a long time. Thanks to all!” wrote one member of an online group of Park Presidio Boulevard neighbors.

The goal is to have a clear path along the middle of the parkways from Fulton all the way to Lake Street.

Special thanks to all the volunteers that came out to help with the planting, and to the neighbors along the greenway who often volunteer their own time to care for the park. It’s looking great!

Sarah B.

L: A pathway on the 600 block of 14th Avenue in the midst of clearing. R: What the finished, cleared path looks like after work is done. Photos by Kay Voyvodich

High school students from the Student Conservation Association helped clean
and plant along the Park Presidio greenway on March 22. Photo by phoca2004

Student volunteers from the USF Psychology program. Photo by phoca2004

Jon and Bennie from SF Rec & Park help replant the Park Presidio greenway. Photo by phoca2004


  1. Thank you to all the volunteers for your hard work in beautifying our wonderful neighborhood!

  2. It was a great day in the greenbelt! Thanks to the volunteers and to the gardening crew who have been really making a push over the last few months.

    But…I want to take the opportunity to remind neighbors that keeping the greenbelt clean, beautiful and usable depends upon using it and maintaining it on our own. The current improvements to the 500 block have been in the works for some time as a result of the efforts of many of the residents of the block. Key to the improvements has been freeing up the time of the gardening crew to actually garden rather than clean trash.

    Some of the small things that have been done to create an environment conducive to respectful usage of the greenbelt have been:

    Regular cleaning – trash attracts more trash so that wrapper on the ground actually is a big deal

    Posted signs – “respect the greenbelt/park” and “no litter” signs help to indicate collective responsibility

    Use fallen logs to create public space – the belt is littered with fallen logs, especially after the tree crew comes around. Arrange the logs into a seating area (exposed to the street so that it can be seen, used and not abused). Or arrange them around some plants to help frame a planting area. Or lay them along the path to better mark it.

    A few words of caution: there is drug use in the belt so be aware of needles. If your block currently has homeless encampments, the city’s 311 service will clean up an abandoned encampments (quickly if you let them know there is medical waste/needles there). The Homeless Outreach Team can provide services to homeless should they want or need it @ (415) 401-2660 Monday – Tuesday and (415) 554-8471 Wednesday – Friday. The non-emergency police hotline, 553-0123 will deal with occupied encampments.

    Hope to see similar improvements along the greenbelt!

  3. THANK YOU!!!!!!!

    I’m a resident in the area and have been walking on the paths both the funston side and now the 14th for the last few weeks. I LOVE IT.

    I was at first a bit nervous about losing some of the trees/plants but the paths are amazing. Makes getting to and from the park so much more enjoyable.

  4. Beautiful! Thanks to all who helped with the clearing and planting. What a difference you have made.

  5. Wow amazing difference. It is always a huge surprise when things like this finally happen. Like a dream come true. Reminds me of the Geary st. median strips finally getting cleaned up. I even saw crews dealing with the tree that fell over today in the median near 18th ave. After years and years of driving by their dirty, dreary ivy covered, litter filled awfullness it’s a pleasure to see them looking good even without a lot of rain. I imagine this is how all the Park Presidio neighbors must feel. Great job!

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