Last week we attended the Walking (and Playing) Tour of Urban Putt as part of the Architecture and the City Festival. Below is our full report.Photos by Patricia Chang
Plans are moving right along to turn a former mortuary on South Van Ness into an 18-hole indoor min golf experiment, complete with a 70-seat restaurant and bar. The project's being spearheaded by former CNET and PC World editor Steve Fox, who's a huge fan of the art of mini golf. In fact, the whole idea for Urban Putt was birthed by a regular event his family used to hold in their house where friends would create elaborate mini golf contraptions and play. Don't believe us? Here's an album for your viewing pleasure. Fox and his family "created all kinds of mechanisms for vertical golf," much of which is going to be used in the Urban Putt space. Fox has grouped a well-rounded team of individuals to help Urban Putt become a reality, including lead designer Chris Myers, who teaches at the Academy of Art University and is a founder of Artbot Toys. Architect Matt Hollis of Mission Bowling fame was selected because Fox "wanted someone who could handle all the crazy details I would throw at him." Another key player is sound designer Andrew Roth, who's incorporating sound into some of the course.
Hollis describes the architecture of the building's facade as "Mission Colonial Revival," and the interiors will have a steam punk aesthetic. The team also stressed that they want all neighbors to feel welcome, and hope that the space will be perceived as "inclusive rather than exclusive."
Fox has a 10-year lease on the building, but is still waiting on one final permit to really get things going. Currently, it looks like Urban Putt won't be ready for its close-up until 2014.
· Mission to Get Upscale Mini-Golf Course [Eater SF]
· Plans to Turn Mortuary into Indoor Mini Golf on South Van Ness [Curbed SF]
· Crawfox [Official Site]