The Hayes Valley Neighborhood Association has written to Mayor Ed Lee asking for “swift and timely” action to resolve the situation at the former site of Hayes Valley Farm.
The location has been occupied by activists for the past 8 days. Originally the protesters, whose numbers remain at roughly 30, claimed to be showing solidarity with protestors in Istanbul Turkey. Their grievances have since evolved into a general stance in support of green urban spaces and against development. Banners and chalk drawings at the site target everything from Monsanto to hipsters.
Of course, Hayes Valley Farm was not the victim of private developers taking over an existing public space. Rather, it was a temporary experiment that was only made possible via cooperation between the Farm’s organizers and the City.
In response to neighbors’ complaints this week about noise and blight stemming from the occupation, HVNA wrote to Mayor Lee on Friday. A copy of the letter was posted on HVNA’s Facebook page.
In the letter, HVNA president William Bulkley emphasizes appreciation for the “hard work of our friends at the Hayes Valley Farm who pioneered organized and negotiated interim use of these parcels for temporary urban agriculture.” Bulkley notes that the Farm “graciously and professionally vacated” the land by the agreed-upon date of May 31st.
Bulkley closes the letter by urging the Mayor take action.
“The HVNA board of directors feels that the current situation on parcels O and P places a health and safety risk to both the participants and our neighbors. We respectfully request that, as Mayor, you direct your staff to take appropriate action in a swift and timely fashion.”
The letter is copied to Supervisor London Breed, SF Chief of Police Greg Suhr, Northern District Captain Greg McEachern, and reps from the Mayor’s office.
The occupiers allegedly received an eviction notice on Thursday, though KTVU cited a police spokesman as denying that the notice came from SFPD. Police have, however, made multiple visits to the farm in the past few days, issuing warnings about noise and trespassing.
We’ll be watching for any more developments in the days ahead.