San Francisco has a plan to bring “a sense of calm and tranquility” to Civic Center—ground zero for the city’s drug crisis—a picture of trees.
A “serene graphic of majestic redwood trees” will soon be pasted onto a newly constructed wall at U.N. Plaza, built by the Mid-Market and Civic Center Community Benefit Districts in coordination with the Department of Emergency Management (DEM).
The department is calling the artwork an “aesthetic vinyl-wrapping barrier” that will show the trees “sprouting from rich brown earth and bathed in ethereal sunlight,” according to an email statement.
That particular scene was selected to “evoke a sense of calm and tranquility in the bustling Civic Center area,” DEM said.
The works began on Dec. 12 and will block access to outdoor planters while they are being restored by the city.
The city will also provide enhanced lighting, increased ambassador and hospitality staffing, regular U.N. Plaza cleanings, increased safety personnel and seasonal decorations to the infamous Downtown area.
The arty barriers are a partnership project between the city, the Mid-Market and Civic Center community benefit districts, which exist to promote local business and advocate the concerns of local residents. The project is called “Be Barrier Beautiful,” and vinyl-wrapped barricades are referred to as “creative barriers” in project parlance.
The Mid-Market Community Benefit District’s website says that “creative barricades add vibrancy to sidewalks and can improve safety in front of vacant storefronts and active worksites.”
Earlier in 2018, an artsy wall was placed in front of a vacant Civic Center storefront that previously housed a Carl’s Jr. restaurant.
The Mid-Market and Civic Center community benefit districts have been contacted for comment.
Garrett Leahy can be reached at firstname.lastname@example.org