May 27, 2008

Red Rover, Red Rover, Send Just The Cruise Ship Terminal Right Over

San Francisco Piers 27-31 and 30-32

As expected, this afternoon The San Francisco Port Commission will entertain a formal request “to allow Shorenstein Properties and Farallon Capital Management to present draft plans for new offices and open space at [piers 30-32] and for a new cruise terminal at [pier 27] no later than September.”

And while the Telegraph Hill Dwellers neighborhood group opposed the development of a larger retail-office-terminal development at Piers 27-31, it appears as though they will support the development of the low-rise cruise terminal in their back yard (and the development of the more vertically inclined offices in someone else’s).

Cruising (Pier 27) And Working (Piers 30-32) But Not Sporting At All [SocketSite]
Plan would smooth water for cruise terminal [Examiner]
Frederick Knows His Piers (A.K.A. Cruise Ships Closer To Pier 27) [SocketSite]
Landmark Sarcasm Update: Hope For North Beach Pagoda Theater? [SocketSite]

First Published: May 27, 2008 11:05 AM

Comments from "Plugged In" Readers

Anything that makes better use of these dilapidated piers is fine in my books.

Posted by: SFhighrise at May 27, 2008 11:29 AM

It'll be nice to have a proper cruise facility, but I seriously doubt that this will draw in much more cruise traffic.

This year Princess and Celebrity are doing a few Alaska cruises from here, but the number of ships decreases every year: 87 visits in '06, 60 in '07, 59 in '08, 46 in '09.

The problem is, we're just too far from a major cruise destination. (I've also heard SF charges more than most ports, but that's secondary.)

In order to run a 7-day cruise (what most people want) a ship has to floor it -- which burns a huge amount of fuel, as consumption rate is exponentially related to speed.

And even then, a ship can't make it to the exciting bits of Alaska or Mexico, and have to spend a bunch of time at sea.

Even a great terminal isn't going to change that. As a cruise fan I'm excited about a new terminal, but as a taxpayer I worry it'll be a waste.

Posted by: Cruise Savvy at May 27, 2008 11:50 AM

"...as consumption rate is exponentially related to speed"

actually consumption is related to the square of speed. So a boat traveling at 30 knots will consume about 4x the fuel as if it were traveling at 15 knots. But it also gets there 2X faster so the total fuel consumption for the whole journey is about 2X more for the faster ride.

Still Cruise Savvy brings up an interesting point. SF is in a cruise backwater. I guess no-one is interested in LA-Santa Barbara-Santa Cruz-SF-Eureka itineraries.

On the choices for the 2 sites for the cruise terminal, Pier 31 would be a lot closer to where cruise tourists would want to go. If the terminal were put at pier 32 then the city would need to install recharge station so cruise guests could top off the batteries on their Jazzys and Rascals on the way out to Ripley's Believe it or Not.

Posted by: The Milkshake of Despair at May 27, 2008 12:16 PM

A final problem with SF as a cruise origin/destination...foreign flag carriers (basically all of the cruise ships except some of the Hawaii ones, as I understand) MUST include a foreign stop by federal law. That's why everything out of LA/San Diego goes to Mexico, everything out of Seattle stops in Vancouver, etc. It's a relic law of the 19th century, but it makes it difficult to include SF on cruise itineraries.

Posted by: curmudgeon at May 27, 2008 12:51 PM

North Beach has nothing left but vacant buildings, a 'scene' full of gangsters, frat bridge and tunnel pricks, once famous bookstores that are now full of tourists, and bland, style over substance type restaurants, for the most part. Why is it like this? Because the neighbors want nothing to change.. well nothing changed all right, and what is left just got worse. There is nothing desirable about North Beach any longer, the neighborhood has lost opportunities that have since gone to SOMA, making this neighborhood the new up and coming defining area of San Francisco. North Beach, will you ever learn from your horrible mistakes?

Posted by: sf at May 27, 2008 1:23 PM

Of course North Beach will never change. It will just rot away, due to people like Aaron Peskin and his shrill, shrewish wife, Nancy Shanahan.

Until someone stands up to that horrible woman, nothing will ever change in North Beach.

Trust me, she is a complete and total nightmare.

Posted by: Michael at May 27, 2008 2:36 PM

There's also that pesky law that says that foreign flagged cruise ships cannot travel between two US ports, that's the reason why the cruise ships don't come to SF as often as they might.

Posted by: Mystery Realtor at May 27, 2008 5:38 PM

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