Oh hey. Bernal Heights is getting new street.
Don’t worry: There won’t be lots of messy construction, weeks of temporary parking restrictions, and cumbersome detours that make it harder to get around. No, there won’t be any of that, because our new street already exists — but until now, it didn’t really have a name.
Yesterday the City’s Land Use and Transportation Committee approved the creation of Martin Avenue on the east side of Bernal Heights. Our friends at CurbedSF broke the story and provide the essential background:
It’s a humble affair, just a short stretch of pavement in Bernal Heights, near the Dogpatch Miller Garden.
Previously, these blocks were home to a messy, confusing triangle, as Brewster Street splits into two before terminating at Mullen Avenue, creating a weird, nameless stretch on city-owned land.
Today the Land Use and Transportation Committee is set to approve a measure conferring the name Martin Avenue on the corridor.
Why Martin Avenue? Well, that’s where this story gets downright charming.
According to the relevant paperwork, the name honors “Martin Ron, a land surveyor whose admiration for his adopted city inspired him to dedicate his career to achieving expertise in San Francisco land surveying.”
Ron established a firm in 1969 (although the city says 1968) that’s done survey work for almost every major project in the city for decades, including the likes of SFMOMA, Millennium Tower, AT&T Park, and even fix-ups on landmarks like the Cliff House and the Golden Gate Bridge.
To be honest, it wasn’t easy to figure out exactly where our new Martin Avenue is located. The maps provided in the official documents are a bit disjointed, and Google Maps makes things a little more confusing by labeling the previously unnamed street as an offshoot of (the otherwise contiguous) Brewster Street. As shown:
Don’t blame Google; the current street signs also indicate this
is was part of Brewster:
But no. That’s not Brewster Street; it’s now officially Martin Avenue.
Once you find it, Martin Avenue turns out to be a lovely little lane. This is Martin Avenue, just west of the point where it connects with Mullen:
It’s not clear if any Bernalese humans will have a Martin Avenue address, but earlier this year, I actually (and unknowingly) visited Martin Avenue with Bernalwood’s Cub Reporter to capture a sighting of a coyote hiding in an adjacent thicket: