Friday, November 27, 2009

SF: 560 Mission Street Plaza

560 Mission Street Plaza

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This is the fountain in front of the JPMorgan Chase tower in San Francisco's Financial District. Apparently this spot is fairly new. You don't see a lot of quasi-public spaces like this in the city, or at least this part of the city. I suppose it's like Tokyo in that way: Land is way too expensive to devote any to things that don't produce revenue. So on the rare occasions when you do stumble across a little park or plaza or fountain or something, you're experiencing a weird form of conspicuous consumption: "Look, we have so much money we can afford to buy land in San Francisco and not build on it". Or make it a playground for high-end designers and architects, as the case may be. Note that this place dates to the middle of the real estate bubble, before the wheels fell off of everything and everyone needed a taxpayer bailout.

I mean, it's owned by a monstrous too-big-to-fail conglomerated megabank, and naturally I'm going to impugn their motives and suspect the worst and generally strive for maximal cynicism. But whatever their reasons were, it still means there's a bit of open space where there otherwise wouldn't be. The local Yelp reviewers seem to like the place, for whatever that's worth.

560 Mission Street Plaza

560 Mission Street Plaza

560 Mission Street Plaza

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