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Moscone Center: The New Catacombs?

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[Credit: SF Chronicle Moscone Expansion, c. 2009; Arrows: Curbed SF]

Plans are afoot- and underfoot- to expand Moscone Center underground. As per the Examiner, it's too small to host the really important conventions without tenting over Howard Street, and conventions are a big deal, revenue-wise, bringing in some $2B annually in taxes, hotels, food, and that evergreen convention staple, booze sales. None of this is new, but it's nice to know they're still thinking about it. Moscone is currently undergoing a makeover (better bathrooms, more wifi) but the Travel Association, a "quasi-governmental agency" wants to expand underground someday as far as Union Square, tapping into BART and the Central Subway. The most immediate plans being talked about is opening up further under Howard Street and burrowing under- the article's a little fuzzy here- 680 Folsom Street and the mid-block garage just across Third Street. But concern for conventioneers' tender sensibilities may be part of moving underground. The Examiner piece quotes Joe D'Allesandro of the Travel Association:

The aggressive panhandling continues to be the No. 1 complaint about San Francisco, not just for conventions but also for tourism,” he said. “They don’t want to be harassed when they walk down the street or feel threatened when they leave their hotel. We’re working on it. Our focus is on the street scene, making sure it’s safe and clean.” By getting visitors off the streets. And thus arose a new class of community activists- NUMBYs- Not Under My Back Yard.

[Curbed SF]

Moscone Makeover Could Draw Higher Profile Events [SF Examiner]

Moscone Center

747 Howard Street, , CA 94103 Visit Website