1980: The beginning of a conversation
A group of community leaders in Bayview-Hunters Point goes to the San Francisco Planning Department in 1980 to start a conversation about how to adapt to the economic vacuum left after the Navy’s departure. A series of meetings over the decade set the wheels in motion for a redevelopment plan that begins to blossom in the mid-2010s.
1983: Artists come to The Point
Following the lead of sculptor and urban pioneer Jacques Terzian, visual artists, musicians and writers descend en masse on the shipyard. Within months, more than 300 working artists have opened studios and workspaces in the former Navy facilities.
They organize to form The Point, which grows to become the largest artist colony in the United States.
1984: Eclectic Cookery gives birth to a food scene
Scott Madison, a local restaurateur, opens Eclectic Cookery in the shipyard’s former Marine Corps barracks. The Cookery provides time-shared kitchen facilities to new food businesses. Over the next three decades, the space serves as a launch pad for hundreds of San Francisco’s beloved food establishments—including El Porteño, Divine Petites Bakery, Hey Boo, Miz Lynn’s, Yvonne’s Southern Sweets and Run Around Smokin’ Q.
In recent years, the Cookery has become a major incubator for the ever-popular food trucks roaming the City’s streets. McGee Cajun Creole and Your Community Foods are just a couple of the highlights.
1985: What’s the Point
The City of San Francisco and US Navy announce plans to rebuild the base, establishing the Shipyard as the home port of the USS Missouri and other vessels.
It’s tough news for artists at The Point.
When the Navy opts not to renew private leases, the colony mobilizes to preserve the unique ecosystem of arts and small business that has flourished there. Bedecked in bright orange t-shirts with the slogan “What’s the Point,” hundreds of artists and other tenants flood City Hall to protest the evictions.
The Point’s artists then join a coalition of community leaders and environmentalists to campaign against the base reconstruction. They successfully stall the evictions until 1989, when the home porting proposal is overturned.