Over the weekend a concerned reader spotted a not-super-conspicuous For Rent sign on the fence below the iconic Bell Plumbing van on a stick at 26th and Vermont streets in Potrero Hill. The space, vacated by Bell, has been empty for some time. Which got us wondering, what are the plans for the site, and, mainly (let's be honest) for the van on the stick, which has been suspended midair and served as an unofficial marker on Highway 101 for as long as we can remember? Also: What is being rented exactly? And would it be possible to live in the van? Is there Wi-Fi?
We called the number on the sign and reached Oliver Dinglafan, manager at Economy Plumbing, which bought the Bell site sometime around last year. He says that Economy is only renting out the warehouse and the garage on the site, and not the main Bell commercial space. "We still want to keep the advertising and the van," he adds. That's because Economy now owns the phone number on the van as well, which gives them a one-of-a-kind advantage on the skyline, if not exactly the right name recognition. Dinglafan is unsure of the company's plans for the main space, but if you need a warehouse or a garage that you never, ever want to have to give people directions to, well, time to go see a man about a van.