glen park

You know a neighborhood in SF has arrived when it has its own association newspaper. In the case of Glen Park, it’s the GPN (Glen Park News). The latest issue has as its above-the-fold headline: “Scofflaw Scavengers Spark Debate.” About the habits of professional recyclers who pick out cans and bottles for the refund money which, apparently, is illegal.

Kind of lame as an urban issue, granted. But I love this anachronistic little newspaper, and I love the neighborhood.

I’m moving from Glen Park this week, my home on and off for the last year and a half, which is leading me to wax poetic about the place.

My litmus test for a neighborhood is how far you have to walk to get a bagel and a newspaper. Not far, as it turns out, if you’re close to g-park center.

Check out La Corneta for the best burritos in the city, Glen Park Station (an old-time divey neighborhood bar) for the atmosphere and great happy hour prices, and Gialina’s for thin-crust brick-oven pizza and friendly servers. In fact, you’ll undoubtedly have to wait for a table at Gialina’s, so you might as well head over to Glen Park Station for pre-dinner cocktails. Plus, the neighborhood has its own little library – how cool is that – and a great used bookstore, Bird and Beckett.

There is definitely a small-town, even a village feel, to the place, despite close proximity to both BART and the highway. It seems insulated, in a good way, possibly because the center sits in a little valley and to get anywhere you have to go up and over hills.

The neighborhood is named after Glen Park Canyon, a yawning 122-acre split of the land that descends from nearby Twin Peaks and where you’ll often find dogs and their humans, or a softball game at the fields by the rec center. I’ve taken walks in Glen Park Canyon, and run along its edges on O’Shaughnessy. It’s an amazing ravine within the city limits, with trails both on the canyon floor and under the homes perched on concrete pilings along its rim.

Glen Park Canyon, ca. 1909

Glen Park Canyon, ca. 1909

I’ll sign off with a few pics of Glen Park through time courtesy of the San Francisco Public Library.

fighting the proposed highway ca. 1958

fighting the proposed highway ca. 1958

Bosworth, looking down Diamond toward Chenery, ca. 1948

Bosworth, looking down Diamond toward Chenery, ca. 1948

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