DANCE SPACE LOSES A ROUND IN BAY AREA ELECTIONS.
Proposition L had been put together by a coalition of artists and nonprofit organizations to stem the disappearance of affordable work spaces in San Francisco, which have been gobbled up in large part by Internet companies. The measure would have allowed for continuing, though limited, office construction but would have outlawed large-scale construction in traditionally low-rent and industrial areas. Developers would also have been required to reserve 10 percent of new construction for nonprofits for fifty years at one-third of market rate. The idea was to allow for reasonable increased growth where it would cause relatively little displacement, such as the downtown area.
By defining dot-com businesses as "housing and offices," the measure would also have closed a loophole in previous legislation (Proposition M) that had been passed by the voters in the 1980s to protect artists' livework spaces.
The proponents, who spent no money on media advertising, had waged a vigorous grassroots campaign relying on word of mouth and community rallies to get the word out. At the very least they won something of a moral victory. A competing initiative, Proposition K, drafted by Mayor Willie Brown's office and the construction industry as a last-minute response to L, was defeated by a much larger margin, despite the fact that its advocates had spent $2.3 million in pushing their more development-friendly plan.
Community activists also brought the public's attention to the issue of affordable artists' space. In October the Board of Supervisors approved a $1.5 million emergency rent-subsidy fund to support arts organizations in danger of losing their spaces. The board also had started the process of drafting legislation that would tread a middle ground between the two competing growth control measures.
|Printer friendly Cite/link Email Feedback|
|Title Annotation:||battle for affordable dance space in San Francisco|
|Article Type:||Brief Article|
|Date:||Feb 1, 2001|
|Previous Article:||Irina loves Maxim ... and other real-life pas de deux.|
|Next Article:||A BALLET VETERAN WINS HEARTS, AND MONEY, IN THE NETHERLANDS.|