Dwell on Design – A Visit from the Mayor

That’s right, San Francisco mayor Gavin Newsom came by the Dwell on Design conference to end the day with a surprise speech. He lead off by saying that he’s proud of his city and of the fact that when visitor’s leave here, they’re thinking “why can’t it be like that everywhere else?” He’s proud that it’s the greenest city in America, but interrupts his applause to tell us that’s not enough. We can be better. We NEED to be better.To hear it from the Mayor, the future really looks bright for San Francisco. By 2010, they entire fleet of taxis will converted into green vehicles. The city has instituted new policies, such as faster, cheaper permitting, to make it easier for people to integrate green design features into their homes and buildings. 69% of our waste is recyclable, but, he says, want zero waste by 2020. He lists off other new policies, geared towards a green San Franicsco: No plastic bags. No bottled water in city hall. Harvesting power from the tides below the Golden Gate Bridge. Greening street mediums, new lighting, new benches, new sidewalks.Then the mayor starts name-dropping architects who are building in the area, an impressive list to say the least – Libeskind, Pelli, Piano, Calatrava, Herzog & deMeuron, and yes, even Gehry. He follows this with a warning to all builders: starting in 2008, the city will have incredibly aggressive green building regulations, requiring at least silver certification for all new construction – even residential remodels. “You want to do business in San Francisco, that’s fine. Here are the rules.”He closes by telling everyone that he (honestly) is a subscriber to Dwell and, he says, “I hope you have fun and I hope you learn something.”

One Reply to “Dwell on Design – A Visit from the Mayor”

  1. That’s depressing!!!

    I feel like we’re slipping down the tubes here in Canada. Ignoring for a moment the policy choices, the populace it seems, hasn’t been so apathetic in my lifetime.
    MAn i grew up around vermi-composters and innovative gardening and solar hot water, all waxing, and i’ve seen interest and availability and moral support dwindle.

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