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Host Your Next Bar Mitzvah Or Leather Party At San Francisco’s LGBT Center

Hard up for cash, San Francisco’s LGBT Community Center is willing to rent out up to 6,999 square feet of its 35,000-square-foot headquarters to new tenants. Located on Market Street in the Lower Haight, the Center has spent the last few modeling itself off of Detroit automakers: bleed cash. (Hence those rumors of a necessary city bailout.) While “there’s nothing really off-limits” as far as new tenants, according to executive director Rebecca Rolfe, anybody coming in will have to show they are “consistent” with the Center’s mission.

By:          Sarah Nigel
On:           Sep 28, 2010
Tagged: , ,
    • Fitz

      For those not from here— this place used legal mumbo jumbo to displace a long-standing and popular gay bar… a place where gay people actually did meet. So a pox on them. The center’s “mission” is forced gentrification.

      Sep 28, 2010 at 10:31 am · @ReplyReply to this comment ·
    • ginasf

      The Center is a prime example of a facility being created from the “top down”. They (a board of gay movers and shakers) built this expensive facility which is rather cold, unwelcoming and unattractive) rather than rehabbing a smaller, older building and letting its organization grow organically. It’s in a not terribly accessible location in terms of public transit and, of course, there’s no parking. And now we’re supposed to be shocked it’s grossly underutilized. I will say that, as someone who facilitates a monthly support group at the Center, that such a place is greatly needed, only that they could have built it smaller at one fourth the cost and had a more appealing and successful facility. Bar Mitzvahs or no, in a few years, I think the Center is ultimately going down. The project has been a mess from the get go.

      Sep 28, 2010 at 12:41 pm · @ReplyReply to this comment ·
    • James

      It’s basically a building that offers room rentals, and they aren’t even that cheap. It’s a shame all the LGBTQ orgs can’t be housed there.

      Sep 28, 2010 at 1:43 pm · @ReplyReply to this comment ·
    • JGW

      More is gained by focusing an the situation today rather than the history of the building – which cannot be changed. The Center is looking to find revenue from non-traditional sources & should be applauded.

      Sep 28, 2010 at 2:58 pm · @ReplyReply to this comment ·
    • Fitz

      @JGW: Yes, let’s just forget about the bullying way that they colonized the area, the top-down structure of the place, and all the reasons that it is an abstraction from the community and underused. It doesn’t need to be rented out, it needs to be sold— use 1/5 of the profits to rent a small, local office which really is part of the community.

      Sep 28, 2010 at 3:59 pm · @ReplyReply to this comment ·
    • gina

      @JGW: Because the history of the center has everything to do with the situation it finds itself in today. Let’s see… George Santayana, a gay man, had a famous quote about history and those who ignore it. I agree with what Fitz says… at this point selling the center and creating a more intimate setting would be the best thing they could do. This one is a badly designed, underutilized, poorly financed black hole.

      Sep 28, 2010 at 10:10 pm · @ReplyReply to this comment ·
    • Fitz

      @gina: A better example is across the bay at the Pacific Center in Berkeley. It’s an old Victorian house, in a neighborhood– and it is used for groups, politics, therapy, “game night” for the under-21 crowd, AA meetings, etc etc.

      Sep 29, 2010 at 7:06 am · @ReplyReply to this comment ·
    • gina

      @Fitz: There are numerous buildings from an empty ex-car dealership on Market which are much closer to the Castro and could easily be turned into meeting, performance and office space for a fraction of the cost of what it cost to build the ugly LGBT center. And, I agree, the Pacific Center, while smaller than what SF needs, is a good model for how to do it right. But, see, it’s not a glamorous enough party and fund-raising space for the power elites who controlled the SF LGBT center.

      Sep 29, 2010 at 12:50 pm · @ReplyReply to this comment ·

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