Wednesday, March 23, 2011

From space opera to just fitting in

Funny the SF Chron's architecture critic, John King, would mention the old Coronet Theater being "the spot where “Star Wars” films once had their local premieres." My husband remembers standing in line in that parking lot to see the latest flights of the Millenium Falcon. [Correction: My husband says he saw the first Star Wars movie at the Coronet, about two weeks into its run, but he had the big standing-in-line experience for "The Empire Strikes Back" at another theater. He can't remember where he first saw "Return of the Jedi". So, OK, personal connection not quite what I thought. Sorry.][P.S. We will not speak of the abomination known as Jar Jar Binks, of which we know only by hearsay.]

Now, says King, there's a frumpy 150-unit senior housing complex on the site. He doesn't like it much as architecture. However, he gives it top marks for blending in quietly to a neighborhood full of single-family homes where lots of neighbors had expected the new density would cause a disturbance in the force local ambiance.

King takes a nice lesson from the story about persuading neighbors to accept density, OK, but still, it's a pity that a local landmark was replaced with something intentionally bland. Neighborhoods need landmarks like the Coronet. They couldn't, for example, have put a small theater in the ground floor of the senior complex? Don't they think old people like movies?

Here's a long comment thread, created over several years, about what the Coronet meant to San Francisco neighbors.

No comments:

Post a Comment