Tagged: historical

San Francisco’s Central Subway: Part I – The Roots of Tunneling


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As a native New Yorker I spent years riding the subway before moving to San Francisco. Although San Franciscans may assume that this experience is not one I would want...

San Francisco’s Central Subway: Part II – Underground Stations


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The Union Square and Market Street Station (UMS) is located in a downtown area with abundant shopping and places to meet.  As you can see in the section  below, the...

Glen Park BART Station


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At a BART event in August 2009 BART director Tom Radulovich said, “Glen Park BART station is the crown jewel in the system.” I wondered why and set out to...

Architectural Ornament in Heraldry and Emblems


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When we look at architectural ornament in the categories of heraldry and emblems, we  find  abstract compositions that no longer imply a physical connection, as was the case with human,...

Architectural Ornament in Plant Forms


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When used as ornament in western architecture plants have generally been rendered naturalistically as if they grew on the buildings they adorned, as shown in the example below. Plants are...

Architectural Ornament in Animal and Bird Forms


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The animals commonly depicted on buildings exemplify desirable human character traits. The majestic lion, a sign of the zodiac and a symbol of the sun and its powers, was associated...

Architectural Ornament in Human Forms


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Do buildings speak to us when we pass them on the street? If so, what do they talk about, and what language do they use? Like humans, buildings talk about...