Progress Park, the largest and most-used park in south Dogpatch, is a neighborhood hub that offers meandering paths, casual benches, a child’s swing, a bocce court and a new street workout fitness center. The park is a great place to take a break, have a leisurely picnic lunch, and enjoy the birds and butterflies that flit through the park. Its greenery is all the more amazing in that the park is a Caltrans freeway verge converted to a park by neighborhood lobbying and labor with help from Public Works.
The northbound 280 onramp swoops overhead. Progress Park was built on Caltrans land with the help of Public Works and Supervisor Malia Cohen, private and public donations and lots of volunteer hours from the community. Bruce Huie spearheaded the neighborhood effort that turned a fenced-in, derelict parcel of sunny land under a freeway into public green space. Dumping and homeless encampments subsided and families and pets - harbingers of neighborhood change - became part of the daily landscape. In a clear sign of change, neighborhood families gather each year for a family Easter egg hunt.
Progress Park is one of the GBD’s most exemplary parks, as it is public green space with no official funding or maintenance from the city. The GBD has replaced and upgraded the irrigation system, improved and extended the park’s decomposed granite paths, added rock retaining walls and expanded plantings, including native plants. The GBD’s most ambitious project was the addition of a work-class street workout facility (Google it - it’s a thing). For more information on the fitness project, click HERE.
Park Steward: Bruce Huie