The paths of Joe Montana and Jerry Rice will connect forever. San Francisco is making sure of it.
FivePoint is melding tradition with modernization by naming the streets of a visionary new neighborhood on the site where Candlestick Park once stood after the heroes of the legendary stadium.
On Sunday, a whole cast of Bay Area legends conversed on the rotunda of San Francisco City Hall to celebrate the past and future of Candlestick Park. In front of a crowd of nearly 200 attendees, Mayor Ed Lee announced the series of streets in the new Candlestick neighborhood that will be named for San Francisco sports legends.
“When families move into the neighborhood, they’ll be living on streets bearing the names of some of San Francisco’s most cherished athletes and executives,” said Lee. “These names will honor the history of the ‘Stick and recognize some of the amazing athletes who call the city home.”
Street naming honorees include 49ers legends Joe Montana, Jerry Rice, Ronnie Lott, former head coach Bill Walsh, longtime former owner Eddie DeBartolo Jr. and executive Carmen Policy. Giants legends are also represented, from Willie Mays and Willie McCovey to Juan Marichal, Orlando Cepeda and Barry Bonds. A fitting honor for those whom former Mayor Willie Brown called “our city’s super heroes.”
McCovey, a former National League MVP and Rookie of the Year, and member of The San Francisco Giants for 14 seasons, recounted Sunday how he “loved playing at Candlestick”. “This is an honor I will cherish for the rest of my life,” said the six-time All-Star.
The Candlestick development – part of San Francisco’s largest redevelopment project in over a century – will transform the celebrated stadium’s former surroundings into a vibrant new community. Anchoring Candlestick will be an urban retail outlet center, as part of a joint venture with Macerich. Alongside the urban retail center, plans are underway for over 7,000 homes, neighborhood shops, restaurants featuring local cuisine, a Film and Arts Center for entertainment, a hotel, community services and nearly 110 acres of parks and open space.
Before the ceremony came to a close, FivePoint President Kofi Bonner recalled a legendary Candlestick Park play known simply as “The Catch.” With 58 seconds left in the 1981 NFC Championship game and the Niners trailing by six, “Joe Cool” lobbed a pass to wide receiver Dwight Clark in the end zone to tie the game. With a completed extra point kick, the 49ers would defeat the rival Dallas Cowboys and go on to win their first of five Lombardi trophies.
With Clark looking on, Bonner unveiled a beautiful mural by Cameron Moberg depicting the timeless San Francisco moment that will be housed in the Candlestick neighborhood.
Former 49ers linebacker Keena Turner reflected, “Candlestick may be gone, but the memories are strong.”
With the redevelopment of Candlestick giving the area new life, Mayor Lee declared, “It’s a whole new ballgame.”
Stay tuned for more about Candlestick’s kick-off this summer.