Giving Compass' Take:
- Jayant Kairam shares how a sewer restoration program is being used to revitalize a community at risk of being forced out by gentrification.
- How can governments encourage this model of infrastructure development?
- Find out about the United States' infrastructure needs.
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Bayview-Hunters Point, a low-lying, four-square-mile pitch of southeast San Francisco, has seen its fair share of transition, and even drama.
Massive real estate projects on the sites of the decommissioned Navy shipyard and Candlestick Park are bringing thousands of new homes and associated commercial activity, signaled by the appearance of craft breweries, coffeehouses and rising real-estate prices that are displacing long-time residents.
This is happening even as the realities of environmental injustice continue to burden the community.
And yet there are things poised to happen in the Bayview that could provide an opportunity for San Francisco -- and for other cities whose own disadvantaged neighborhoods face similar issues -- to tackle the intertwined problems of racial and environmental injustice, residential displacement, and the need for the kinds of jobs that support strong communities.
The Bayview is not just vacant industrial lots and brownfields. It's also the location of San Francisco's Southeast Treatment Plant, which handles 80 percent of the city's sewage flows. A $7 billion upgrade plan is on deck for the city's entire 100-year-old sewer system.
The San Francisco Public Utilities Commission, the agency that owns and operates the plant, is taking a deliberate approach to ensure that those upgrade dollars are maximized for community benefit.
The SFPUC is partnering with other regional water agencies in a consortium called Baywork to identify and develop career pipeline programs for these positions. This type of assessment is a necessary step to ensure that the agencies are planning strategically and bringing in the relevant educational and training partners -- be they high schools, community colleges or for-profit entities -- as they identify a new generation of "green collar" jobs that can offer at-risk youth and other residents career professions in the neighborhoods where they grew up.
Read the full article about infrastructure and community by Jayant Kairam at Governing Magazine.