Huntington Park, which sits perched at the top of Nob Hill between Grace Cathedral and the Pacific Union Club, may soon be surrounded by a wrought iron fence more than six feet tall. A set of 12 to 15 foot gates would be used to lock the park between midnight and 5AM. The fence is an initiative of the Nob Hill Association neighborhood group, which has given both safety and historical justifications for its construction. Although a series of semi-public and public meetings were held last year about the proposed fence, nothing has been posted in or around the park, and many neighbors are surprised to hear about the plans.
When Arabella Huntington deeded the land for the park to city in 1915, she called for "restrictions [that] will keep it from being used as a loafing place for undesirable citizens and render it safe and attractive for women and children." A wrought-iron fence surrounded the original Huntington Mansion, which was a private residence that stood where the park now does. The mansion was destroyed in the 1906 earthquake, but the original fence, built in 1876, survived and will become part of the new fence if constructed.
Nob Hill Association has raised $1.4 million for the projects and also intends to improve the children's playground in the park and explore separated play areas solely for pets. Long-term plans also include restoring park benches, grass and topsoil and fountains. The proposal is supported by Supervisor David Chiu, who represents the area, and will soon go before the Board of Supervisors.
· Park Fence Enclosure Draws Mixed Reactions from Nob Hill Neighbors [SF Examiner]
· The Future of Huntington Park [SF Parks and Rec]