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Questions and Answers

When were the steps built?

In 1926. 

Whose property are the steps on?

The steps are on City property. City permits are required to decorate the steps, and the project has been carefully designed to meet City regulations.

How was the mosaic installed?  

The mosaic was created in 163 separate panels by the artists, working together with project volunteers. High-fire outdoor tile was used. The panels were laid out on mesh backing, then applied to the risers by a professional tilesetter, according to the highest industry standards.  Finally, the tilesetter grouted the mosaic and paved the treads with ADA-compliant tile.

 How many neighbors were involved in the project?

The project has had 60-70 supporters, most of whom live in Golden Gate Heights. Over 300 neighbors have participated in the creation of the panels.

 Could the project cause potential increases in traffic?

 This is really a local neighborhood effort, intended for the benefit of ourselves and our families, and we would like to keep it that way. Certainly none of us want to see tour buses, for example, idling at the foot of the steps. So, we’ve asked the Department of Parking and Traffic to prohibit the presence of tour buses at the site, a measure which has been done successfully in other San Francisco neighborhoods. There may also be a slight increase in car traffic, but this is expected to decrease after the first month or two after construction, as most people will be unaware of the presence of the decorated steps unless they hear about it by word of mouth.

How can we make sure the decorated steps don't attract delinquent activity and/or spray painting?

We have spoken with an officer of the San Francisco Police who deals primarily with juvenile delinquency and who has lived in the neighborhood for 18 years. He asked about the design for the steps and said that it was “highly unlikely” that the decoration of the steps would attract any sort of juvenile delinquent activity. He said that people who do go to the top of the hill to "hang out" go there because it is far away and dark, not right in the middle of the neighborhood - where the steps are.  

We’ve also spoken with Precita Eyes Murals center in the Mission District. They have seen very few cases of damage to the murals.

Will the steps be maintained once they are decorated?

We have planned very carefully for the maintenance of the steps, however, professional standards, methods and materials have been employed during the installation of the mosaic, minimizing the need for subsequent maintenance.



     We are in awe of this project!

     - Neighbor Diane Milber