Balboa Park—Under Construction

March 27, 2012

For questions or comments about the playground, please email Philip Vitale, Project Manager, or call 415.495.4014.

Skate park completed! The grand opening on September 29 was a huge success! Watch the video from SF Rec and Park that captures some of the action!

Construction Update, Skate park progress - August 18, 2012

  • Speer Co.—a firm that specializes in designing and building skate parks all over the United States—is currently installing the skate elements.

Grand Opening Celebration - August 18, 2012

  • Over 500 community members attended a celebration with speeches, dancing, recreational games, arts and crafts, food, and play!
  • Three supervisors and the General Manager for San Francisco Rec and Park spoke about the importance of the public-private partnership that made this park possible.
  • Sam Hodder, California State Director at The Trust for Public Land, spoke about our mission to create a quality place to play for every child in the Bay Area.

A huge thank you to community groups that helped support the event, including Whole Foods Market for supplying hotdogs, ice cream, and games, City Racquet Shop for tennis lessons and racquet demos, the Ingleside Police Station for grilling skills, and to the Danza Xitlalli and Cuicacalli Escuela de Danza for incredible performances. The park opening was also covered in the San Francisco Chronicle.

If you weren't able to make it we made a video of highlights from opening day. We also posted a few photos below but you can see more on our facebook page.

Click images to enlarge photos.

Sculpture Installation - August 14, 2012

  • The Trust for Public Land commissioned Rachel Rodi to design and mosaic a sculpture that tells the story of the Balboa Park renovation and recognizes major donors to the project. The sculpture sits at the corner of San Jose Avenue and Sgt Young Drive.
  • The sculpture was fabricated and tiled in a studio in Vallejo. It was then transported to the site and grouted in place.

Click images to enlarge photos.

Balboa Park Construction Update–July 31, 2012

  • Skate park construction is moving quickly. Viewers can now see the large bowl in the middle of the park.
  • An educational sign, designed by the Exploratorium, has been installed in the new play area
  • The contractor seeded the lawns.
  • Reclaimed granite blocks/curbs have been installed, expanding the Havelock Mini-Plaza.
  • The playground art fence and sign is being installed at San Jose and Sgt. Young Drive.

Click images to enlarge photos.

Balboa Park Community Tree Planting Day–July 28, 2012

Thanks to New Mission Terrace neighbors who came out to Balboa Park on Saturday to help plant trees in the new park! Together, we planted, staked, and watered six new trees around the park. Special thanks to Pacific Nurseries for donating the trees, and to Christopher Campbell Tree Design for initiating and coordinating the donation and community day, and to Roxie's for providing sustenance. The trees will be a great addition to the renovated park!

Click images to enlarge photos.

Construction Update–July 27, 2012

  • Elements for the skatepark are currently being installed.
  • Matt Lowe, local artist, installed the art fence he designed and constructed this week. The fence reflects the iconic trees and character of the park
  • Contractor will begin hydroseeding the lawn this week.

Click images to enlarge photos.

Balboa Park grand opening celebration

Mark your calendar for the park opening, Saturday, August 18, 11:00 a.m. - 2:00 p.m. More information

Balboa Community Mosaic Weekend June 22-24, 2012

Thanks to over 70 community members who came out to Balboa Park to help build and install mosaics! Together, we built and grouted 2 stair risers and three circular insets that we placed in the new playground area. We also grouted the incredible mosaics made by 8th graders at Denman Middle School and the high school glass class at Lick Wilmerding High School. All of these elements are colorful, detailed, and tell the story of how we San Franciscans enjoy Balboa Park!

Click images to enlarge photos.

Construction Update–June 19, 2012

  • The asphalt subcontractor will be finishing the paving for the pathways this week.
  • The fencing subcontractor is finishing priming and painting the posts, and will be installing the fabric on the fences at the skatepark and the back of the ballfields next week.
  • The basketball court will be paved and the basketball hoop will be installed next week.
  • Planting is progressing quickly! The park looks colorful with many of the new flowers, shrubs, and trees all around. Hydroseeding will start next week.
  • Mosaic event will happen this Friday, Saturday and Sunday. Please come out and help build your park!

Click images to enlarge photos.

Construction Update–June 5, 2012

  • Subcontractors will finish the rocking and the paving of the pathways this week
  • Fencing subcontractor is finishing installing the fence posts and fabric on the ballfields and Ocean Avenue
  • Basketball hoops will be installed this week
  • The contractor is finishing forming the skatepark pad, and will be pouring the final concrete at the end of the week
  • Planting is in full swing! Shrubs, sod, trees, and flowers are all going in the ground!

Click images to enlarge photos.

Construction Update–May 22, 2012

  • The contractor is working on the pathways around the baseball fields: Placing the base rock this week and paving the pathways next week.
  • Students from Lick Wilmerding High School will be setting and grouting the mosaics they made this semester in the play area.
  • The contractor will install the play surfacing in the new play areas next week.
  • Work in the new skate park area continues with grading and work on the retaining walls.
  • Planting shrubs, trees, and grass installation will begin next week.
  • The basketball court will be paved next week, and will be closed during this time.

Click images to enlarge photos.

Construction Update–May 15, 2012

  • The fences around the skate park and ballfield side of Ocean Avenue are being installed this week.
  • Storm and area drains are being installed at the skate park.
  • Contractor is working on the pathways along San Jose Avenue and Ocean Avenue. This includes compaction, rocking, and paving.
  • Footings for the art fence designed by community member Matt Lowe are being poured this week.

Click images to enlarge photos.

Construction Update–May 9, 2012

  • The contractor is starting work on the pedestrian pathways along San Jose Avenue, adjacent to the ball field fence.
  • Site work—off-hauling dirt and installing utilities—has begun for the skatepark. Grading, compaction, and rocking will happen at the end of this week and next.
  • Playground equipment is mostly installed. The rubberized play surfacing will be installed in the middle of May.
  • Students from Lick Wilmerding and Denman Middle School are finishing their mosaic art projects that will be installed on the stair risers in the new playground area.

Click images to enlarge photos.

Construction Update–April 24, 2012

  • The playground equipment—including the swings and net climber—is being installed.
  • The tennis court is being resurfaced.
  • Construction on the skate park at Ocean and San Jose Avenue is beginning.
  • Play area surfacing to be installed next week.

Click images to enlarge photos.

Construction Update–April 11, 2012

  • Formwork and rebar is in place. Concrete pathways are ready to pour. The pour was scheduled for this week, but has been delayed due to rain.
  • Base-rock has been compacted and ready for play equipment footings to be poured. Rubberized play surfacing to be installed in the coming weeks.
  • Asphalt pathways and picnic area pads have been poured.

Click images to enlarge photos.

Construction Update–April 3, 2012

  • Further progress in new play area:
    • sub-grade compacting
    • continuing with concrete work to pour pathway edges and cheek walls
    • carpenters are forming the stairs
    • compacted aggregate base will be placed on the playground pathways next week.
  • Fence sub-contractors are finishing the fence posts and fabric around the existing playground (4/3). The playground is now open after being closed for 2 days. They will then work on the fence around the new play area and the maintenance storage area.
  • Tennis court work continues to move forward. The contractor is removing weeds and will start overlaying the slip sheet this week.

Click images to enlarge photos.

Construction Update–March 27, 2012

  • The posts and fencing along the San Jose Avenue portion of the ball fields and stadium are nearing completion.
  • The fabric on the tennis court fencing is almost fully installed. Weather permitting, the resurfacing of the tennis courts will begin next week.
  • The curbs and cheek walls (low walls on either side of stairs) in the new playground area were poured last week, and the contractor is currently forming the stairs in the new playground area.
  • The contractor will start forming the walkways next week, and will then lay rocks on the pathways starting on the stadium side.
  • The footings for the play equipment will be prepped next week. 
  • Tree removal notices for the skate park are posted.  It's gonna to be great.

Click images to enlarge photos.

Temporary Playground Closure - Monday, April 2nd & Tuesday, April 3rd

The existing children's playground at Sgt. Young Drive will be temporarily closed to allow for the installation of additional perimeter fencing. The children's playground is scheduled to reopen on Wednesday, April 4th and remain open during the remaining park improvement project. Apologies for any inconvenience this may cause.

Construction Update–March 9, 2012

On Saturday, March 3, TPL project manager, Philip Vitale, and Jake Gilchrist from the San Francisco Recreation and Parks Department, led a construction site walk at Balboa Park. Philip and Jake reviewed the design with the community, gave updates about the construction schedule, walked around the perimeter of the construction site, and answered questions from the community.

Q: Will there be new planting along the soccer stadium fencing?
A: Yes, although the planting plan specifies lower and less dense shrubs for views across the park and to increase a sense of security.

Q: Does the Balboa Park and Playground Improvement Plan incorporate pedestrian crossings on streets around the park?
A: Bulb-outs (curb extensions) were installed on Sgt Young Drive to reduce the crossing distance for pedestrians and encourage vehicles to slow down. New Mission Terrace Neighborhood Improvements Association is working with the MTA to further address traffic calming around the neighborhood.

Q: Will the fencing around the tennis court be reinstalled?
A: Yes, new fencing will be installed with a windscreen.

Q: Will the fence along Ocean Avenue remain?
A: There will be a new fence along Ocean Ave that is pulled slightly into the park to make walking along the sidewalk to the BART station easier and safer.

Q: Will there be a skate park?
A: Yes, the skate park is still part of the plan. It will be constructed in the summer/fall, and will be geared toward beginner skaters.

Q: Where will the new playgrounds be? Who will use them? Will they connect to the existing playground?
A: The new playground will be between the Sargeant Young entrance and the existing playground, and will be geared toward school-aged children. These areas incorporate a play structure donated by The Exploratorium, and will have mosaic art made by local schools and community members. The existing and new playground will be connected by a series of ramps and stairs to allow for wheelchair and stroller access.

Click images to enlarge photos.

Construction Update–February 28, 2012

  • The retaining walls along the tennis court and the KaBOOM playground are complete.
  • The posts and fencing along the ball fields and soccer field will be installed in the coming days.
  • The contractor continues to make progress on the pathways throughout the site. The earth is being graded and compacted, headers are being formed, and the rock base is being laid.
  • The stairs at the play area will be formed.
  • The curbs along Sergeant Young Drive and in the play areas will be formed.

Click images to enlarge photos.


Construction update–February 14, 2012

  • The pedestrian pathways near the KaBOOM playground and by the Havelock entrance to the soccer stadium are currently being graded. The contractor will be forming the header and laying the base rock for this path in the coming weeks.
  • The pathways that link the new playground, picnic area, tennis courts, and basketball courts will be graded in the coming weeks.
  • The form work for the retaining walls is being finished, and the walls will be poured in the coming weeks.
  • The fence along San Jose will be installed, but will not disrupt scheduled games or practices.
  • The fence around the soccer stadium will be installed.
  • The KaBOOM playground, ballfields, soccer field, and areas along San Jose will remain open and accessible.
  • The art fence is currently being constructed by a local metal artist off-site.
  • Designs for mosaic art elements and donor recognition are being developed by students at Denman Middle School, Lick Wilmerding High School, and a local artist.

Click images to enlarge photos.

Construction update–January 21, 2012

  • Trees have been removed to make way for the school-aged play area, retaining wall at tennis courts, picnic area, pedestrian path to Havelock and stadium fencing.
  • Installation of the improved irrigation systems continues with trenching at the soccer stadium and north of the tennis courts.
  • Storm drains are being installed at the picnic area.
  • Footings for the tennis court retaining wall will be prepared in the coming weeks.
  • Grading of school age play area will take place late January.
  • Grading for the Havelock pathway will take place late January.
  • The Ballfields, Kaboom Play Area and playfield north of the tennis courts remain open.

Click images to enlarge photos.

Construction update–December 21, 2011

  • Pedestrian crossings ramps have been installed along the North side of Sgt. Young Drive.
  • Tennis court fencing and surrounding vegetation has been removed to allow for a new retaining wall, new fencing, seating, improved drainage and resurfacing.
  • Heavy grading has begun to make way for the new School Aged Play Area.
  • Construction safety fencing has been erected near and around the Tennis Courts.
  • The existing Kaboom Play Area remains open during this phase of construction.