July 26: Visions of the Future of San Francisco Bay, as of the 1940's
Date: July 26, 2009
Time: 1:30 PM – 2:30 PM
Place: The Bay Model Visitors Center, 2100 Bridgeway, Sausalito CA 94965. Although the address for the Bay Model Visitors Center is on Bridgeway, the building itself is actually located off of Marinship Way, which splits off of Bridgeway just to the south and runs down a small hill to the nuilding. The satellite photo below shows the huge complex, and the map shows how Bridgeway and Marinship Way intersect. Once you've turned onto Marinship Way signs will lead you to parking for the Bay Model Visitor Center.
Price: Free, but donations are appreciated
In the 1940s a man named John Reber proposed a revolutionary plan for literally moving mountains of earth to dramatically reconfigure San Francisco Bay… even though he was a teacher and theatre producer, not an engineer or biologist!
Reber wanted to use gigantic dams to turn the northern and southern ends of the Bay into fresh water lakes, use the tops of the dams to build new freeways and mass transit lines across the Bay, and fill marshlands to make more room for building.
The benefits: abundant fresh water, improved regional transportation, more land.
The problems: loss of fisheries, the complete remaking of the Bay eco-system, and chain reactions that were hard to predict.
How does this relate to Sausalito? The Bay Model in Sausalito was constructed by the US Army Corps of Engineers to test the Reber Plan, in part because as engineers they had deep concerns about potential damage to the Bay. The model played a key role in launching the modern era of respect for San Francisco Bay and the end of "landfill real estate."
Want to hear the whole story? On this guided tour of the Bay Model US Army Corps of Engineers Ranger Linda will fill in the dramatic details.
Google Map Instructions: Use the "+" and "-" buttons to zoom in and out, the arrow keys to scroll the map, and the SAT button to see the satellite view.
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