Presidio field hospital, thankfully, never needed / Bernal mountain lion caught

It's Thursday, May 20.

Hey there, San Francisco. 

Take a moment to let this tweet set in from Dr. Vivek Jain, who helped lead the Covid-19 response at SF General Hospital. 

No current patients. Pretty dang cool. 

Of the recent milestones our city has reached in recent days—one million vaccines administered, 75% of residents over 16 receiving at least their first shot, etc.—this one for me, for whatever reason, hits different. 

(Did I use that right??) 

It’s also fitting that on the same day SF General reached zero Covid patients, Here/Say Media’s Christina Campodonico unearthed an awesome story about what would have happened if our city’s hospitals became too crowded during the pandemic. One solution, Campodonico writes, would have been sending as many as 94 non-Covid patients to an old army warehouse in the Presidio that the city converted into a field hospital. 

“We were glad to have it in our proverbial back pocket,” San Francisco’s Director of Health, Dr. Grant Colfax, told Here/Say. Though, in the end, the site was never used. 

Now one big question remains—What should be done with the 97 murals that local artists painted on the hospital’s partitions? One idea from Supervisor Catherine Stefani is to showcase them in City Hall or another exhibition area to “commemorate everything we learned through the pandemic.” 

I can only wonder what future generations will think when they see photographs of the Presidio field hospital. On the one hand, how lucky we were to have never needed it. But on the other hand, how crazy that we almost did. 

And with that… onto some news… 

Quick bits: 

  • 🏠 As a part of the Biden Administration's $1.9 trillion American Rescue Plan, San Francisco will receive 887 Emergency Housing Vouchers that can be used as a subsidy to pay one’s rent, Mayor Breed announced on Thursday. City officials estimate that the vouchers will help up to 1,000 people in need of housing. (Mayor Breed

  • 🏀 The Warriors lost to the Lakers in a 103-100 nail-biter on Wednesday night. They will now face the Memphis Grizzlies on Friday, and the winner of that game will make it into the Western Conference playoffs as an 8-seed. (Examiner

  • 🎷 Stern Grove’s free summer concert series is returning this year, Mayor Breed said in a statement on Thursday. A lineup hasn’t been announced but the first event is slated for Sunday, June 20. (Datebook

  • 🍕 Itria, a new Italian restaurant serving “bubbly, Foccacia-like pan pizza,” opens on Friday in the Mission. Its chef, Daniel Evers, honed his skills at Al’s Place and Cotogna. (Eater

  • 🛍 According to Yelp, “consumer interest” (which was measured by page views, reviews, and photos added) was 18% higher for businesses located on a car-free section of Valencia Street relative to the rest of San Francisco. Yelp has seen similar spikes in sections of other cities closed to car traffic as well. (Here/Say

  • 🚲 Forget Bike to Work Day, Friday is Bike to Wherever Day! The long tradition of riding into the office on the third Friday in May (National Bike Month) was altered last year when many people started working from home. But this feels like one of those changes we should keep. “Join people across San Francisco in riding your bike to get to wherever you need to go–or just for fun!” the SF Bicycle Coalition’s website reads. (SF Bicycle Coalition

And finally… 

The mountain lion that had been roaming through Bernal Heights earlier this week was cornered into a tree near Santa Marina and Mission Street on Wednesday night where it was “dart[ed] and remove[d]” by animal control officers. 

The lion was taken to the Oakland Zoo Thursday morning and after an examination, it will be released in an unpopulated area of Santa Clara County, a zoo spokesperson said. 

Here’s a video of the mountain lion at the Oakland Zoo: 


That’s all for today! Happy Thursday y’all and see you back here tomorrow for some weekend planning. Talk soon. - Nick B. 

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