Reshaping the Urban Landscape

City Streets comprise 25% of San Francisco’s land area. Most of San Francisco’s street area is used for the movement and storage of private autos, but there is a growing movement to unlock City streets’ potential as temporary and permanent spaces for active transportation, meeting, play, community, greenery, nature, and managing urban waters. This moderated discussion features the region’s foremost leaders in imaginative street and public space design. Together, we will explore the ways San Franciscans are already reclaiming city streets, and the landscape of opportunities that lie ahead.

Parklet at 3876 Noriega Street. Photo by the San Francisco Planning Department

Parklet at 3876 Noriega Street. Photo by the San Francisco Planning Department

Please join us for Tomorrow Transit: Reshaping the Urban Landscape on December 10 from 6:00-8:00 p.m. at the Women’s Building. This free discussion explores the future of our streets and public spaces. 

Meet Our Panelists:

Adam Greenfield is a San Francisco-based public space advocate and community organizer. He is founder of Streets For All, an initiative to make San Francisco the block party capital of the United States, which has lead to almost 40 community street events since 2009. Adam is also co-founder and Chair of the Inner Sunset Sundays events, a leading model in San Francisco for how communities can regularly reclaim streets for socializing, play, culture, and general enjoyment. His other projects include Built Curious, a walking experience that raises awareness of urban design principles, and The Public Bench Project, a grassroots initiative to build community through benches. Currently, he is collaborating on a project to create inspiring images of San Francisco’s streets reimagined as civic gathering spaces.

Allan Jacobs is a consultant in city planning and urban design. He twice chaired UC Berkeley’s Department of City and Regional Planning, where he taught for nearly 30 years, along with University of Pennsylvania and University College London. Allan is the former Director of the San Francisco Department of City Planning, author of San Francisco’s Urban Design Plan, and several books, including the forthcoming The Good City: Reflections and Imaginations, Great Streets, Looking at Cities, and Making City Planning Work.


Rosey Jencks leads the Urban Watershed Management Program at the San Francisco Public Utilities Commission where she integrates stormwater management and other water sensitive polices and designs into San Francisco’s landscape.  She is currently project manager for the Urban Watershed Assessment a citywide planning effort to identify green and grey infrastructure solutions for the next 20 years and is the technical lead on the SFPUC’s Civic Center Sustainable Utility District. Rosey has a master’s degree in Landscape Architecture and Environmental Planning from UC Berkeley. She has worked as a planning consultant to local governments and in public policy and environmental nonprofits. She was a co-founder of the San Francisco Green Schoolyard Alliance and has focused on urban greening in all her work.

Elizabeth Macdonald is Associate Professor of Urban Design at UC Berkeley’s Departments of City and Regional Planning and Landscape Architecture/Environmental Planning. Her research focuses on the history of urban form, street design, and the post-occupancy assessment of streets and neighborhoods shaped by planning and urban design policy. She is also a partner in the San Francisco-based urban design firm, Jacobs Macdonald: Cityworks. She consults internationally on street design and planning projects and has designed multiway boulevards in San Francisco, Vancouver, British Columbia, and Ahmedabad, India. Elizabeth has authored Pleasure Drives and Promenades: A History of Frederick Law Olmsted’s Brooklyn Parkways, The Boulevard Book: History, Evolution, Design of Multiway Boulevards, The Urban Design Reader.

Blaine_Merker_Web_RoundBlaine Merker is an Urban Designer inspired by the challenge of making cities that support human happiness, equity, health and connectedness. As Head of Team at Gehl Studio San Francisco, he directs fine-grained, catalytic projects that steer cities and organizations towards sustainability, creativity and long-term value creation. Blaine is a seasoned listener and facilitator, engaging communities, governments, developers, academics and cultural institutions in cross-disciplinary collaboration. He comes to Gehl from leading Rebar Art and Design Studio and is a lecturer at the University of California Berkeley College of Environmental Design, where he earned his masters degree.