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Why San Francisco techies hate the city they transformed

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Old 07-03-2019, 12:28 PM
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Why San Francisco techies hate the city they transformed

Actually a good story worth reading!

'We all suffer': why San Francisco techies hate the city they transformed



A woman lies on a block along the Embarcadero, across from Google’s satellite office in downtown San Francisco.

The Guardian - continues
 
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Old 07-04-2019, 06:35 AM
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About 5 years ago I went to a conference held at the Moscone Center in San Francisco. I got lucky and got a room at the W across the street. My coworker got put up at some random hotel several blocks away. One night I met him at his hotel to go check out a restaurant that was closer to him. It was surprising how walking a few blocks from his hotel completely changed the atmosphere. Entire sidewalks were filled by tents. The smell was awful. I was also surprised at how aggressive the homeless were at pan handling. It should tell you something when a fast food place has a security guard to keep the homeless out...

That was my only time visiting San Francisco. I just had a different vision in my head how the city was going to be. The touristy areas were kept clean though and the restaurants were amazing. I've been asked numerous times if I want to go back to that conference in that city and I've since declined. I much preferred Seattle since it has a similar vibe but much cleaner.
 
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Old 07-04-2019, 08:13 AM
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But I have been to Seattle many times and the homeless tents have become much more visible. Big change even since my first trip in maybe 2012. Economy really bad split, high paid tech workers with leased BMWs or uber vs everyone else many of whom can not make the pay v rent equation work.


Going back next week...
 
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Old 07-07-2019, 05:13 AM
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I work for a police department in King County (not Seattle PD), and I deal with homeless camps far more often than I thought possible when I got hired about ten years ago. The vast majority, in fact every last one I can think of in at least a year, are not in a camp because rent costs too much. They are there because they're addicted to usually heroin, sometimes meth, a very few are alcoholics.

Mind you, that doesn't mean all homeless people are addicts- the ones that aren't hooked on something are in shelters and actively trying to get back into the job market. And don't just take my word for it, on the chance my job distorts my perceptions. One of the local news channels did a far better job explaining it than I ever could.

https://komonews.com/news/local/komo...attle-is-dying
 
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Old 07-07-2019, 07:03 PM
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Hasdrubal, great input thank you. I did not mean to gloss over the drug issue. Heroin and derivatives are taking over everywhere, sometimes with a spike in homelessness sometimes not. I do wonder if part of the increase in drug use is kicked off at a personal level by not being able to make ends meet ...

And, having many coworker in Seattle, I have read from time to time on the topic in the local paper. Seems to share what you are saying, the ones trying to get a job are in the shelters, the ones who use drugs are on the street (drugs not permitted in shelters)
 
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Old 07-09-2019, 07:00 PM
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I didn't think you were trying to gloss over anything, it's a complicated issue with more depth than most folks who live here want to contemplate. Unfortunately, the local political leadership seems to make it worse with every decision.

Housing is expensive because the tech companies are bringing more people to the region. A middle school understanding of supply and demand would tell us to build more housing, but they make it more and more difficult to build. More taxes, more restrictive building codes, more permits, zoning restrictions, and every extra step brings increased fees on top of the increased taxes. Property developers won't operate at a loss, so the price of new housing stays high. On top of that, the transportation people in Seattle are actively reducing the road space available for cars.

Drug addicts need treatment, but the money doesn't go to rehab centers. They could be forced to accept treatment if they were in jail- the KOMO story talks about a facility in (I think, been a while since I watched it) Rhode Island where it's more like a hospital than a cell block, and addicts are gradually rehabilitated. Instead, they talk about how it's unfair to punish people for simply being addicted, so they ignore all the car prowls and mail theft and leave them in the woods. Some of these camps with three or four people have upwards of thirty bicycles piled up.

The result is we're starting to see more and more homeless who came from out of state because they know they won't be prosecuted- the places that have drug problems but a less serious homeless problem actually try to enforce the law.

To the point of the original article, cities that have population booms can't continue in their historical form. They need to open themselves up to much higher population density, like New York style high rise buildings, or they won't be able to find space to house their people. Streamline the permitting process, give tax breaks to construction, etc. Higher population density also makes a mass transit network a lot more practical. San Francisco's BART is probably a lot better than Seattle, which has a third the density, and probably worse than the NYC subway, which has less than double, but still about 10,000 people per square mile more.
 
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Old 07-10-2019, 09:24 AM
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Originally Posted by 2Rismo2 View Post
The smell was awful. I was also surprised at how aggressive the homeless were at pan handling.
on day 1, I too was surprised by how aggressive the local homeless were
on days 2-4 ... I quickly learned to be aggressive back, and the rest of my visit was smooth sailing. bum = "can I have your leftovers" .... me = "NO MAN, IMMA EAT IT LATER" ... and they left me alone.


and +1 on the smell, yuck
 
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Old 07-11-2019, 09:10 AM
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Originally Posted by evilchargerfan View Post
on day 1, I too was surprised by how aggressive the local homeless were
on days 2-4 ... I quickly learned to be aggressive back, and the rest of my visit was smooth sailing. bum = "can I have your leftovers" .... me = "NO MAN, IMMA EAT IT LATER" ... and they left me alone.


and +1 on the smell, yuck
Oh it wasn't even about the initial approach. I'm in the DC metro area and with the HCOL, there are homeless here so I'm familiar with the interaction. They typically don't bother you after you show your disinterest. I found in SF, after the initial no, there wasn't any hesitation to keep pestering you or even just hovering too close for my comfort. The worst was when they were in groups, I guess they were emboldened in numbers.

It's sad the situation they're in. I've traveled overseas, and there is a lot more support given to homeless in the US. Sometimes though, you can't help someone out of the situation they're in unless they want to get out of it themselves.
 

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