Crissy Field Center is on the Move

For Immediate Release
June 29, 2009

CRISSY FIELD CENTER IS ON THE MOVE
Facility Temporarily Relocates to East Beach in Fall 2009 for Duration of Doyle Drive Replacement Project

SAN FRANCISCO, CA: The Crissy Field Center at Mason and Halleck Streets in the Presidio, operated by the Golden Gate National Parks Conservancy and the National Park Service, will be relocating in September 2009 due to the acceleration of the Doyle Drive replacement project.  Groundbreaking and site preparations for the Center’s temporary site will begin the week of June 29. The Doyle Drive project has been moved up 16 months earlier than originally planned as a result of the receipt of funding from the American Recovery and Reinvestment Act. The Doyle Drive project will involve three to four years of heavy construction to improve seismic, structural and traffic safety of the highway, and during this period it will not be possible for the Center to operate the facility and programs effectively due to the close proximity to the construction area.

An in-depth survey of available and appropriate park sites—in conjunction with an active community outreach effort—determined that the easternmost edge of Crissy Field’s East Beach area would be the best temporary location for the Center. This site allows the Center to continue using the natural and cultural resources of the national park, especially the outdoor areas of Crissy Field and marsh, for its science and environmental programs that serve youth, schools, and the greater community. Modular, “green” classrooms from San Francisco-based Project FROG, which are ADA accessible and pre-approved by the state of California for school use, will be assembled on site. These smart buildings can be removed and re-used at other park locations once the Crissy Field Center returns to its current home and the temporary site restored to its present condition.

All Center programs scheduled through August 2009 will continue as planned. Summer camps and programs will not be affected by the relocation plan. During the transition period in fall 2009, programming will scale back temporarily before returning to full capacity in 2010. In addition to the educational classrooms, the new structure will have a snack bar and visitor information area with park-related items for sale, both of which will be open to the public seven days a week. Public use and access at East Beach will remain unchanged outside the immediate construction site.

The Crissy Field Center—located in the heart of the Golden Gate National Parks, one of the world’s largest national parks in an urban setting—is an internationally recognized model for reaching out to underrepresented groups (such as urban youth) who have not traditionally visited national parks. “The Parks Conservancy is proud to continue its tradition of working with the National Park Service to reach diverse audiences through Crissy Field Center programs,” said Greg Moore, executive director of the Parks Conservancy. “Since 2001 the Center has positively impacted the lives of young people by fostering opportunities for them to learn and play in nature and experience the interconnection between the natural and urban environments.”

Acting General Superintendent of Golden Gate National Recreation Area Frank Dean added that “the concept of partnership is deeply embedded in the management philosophy of Golden Gate. Our collaboration with the Parks Conservancy, as reflected in the Crissy Field Center’s success, showcases how a federal agency and a nonprofit organization can jointly create a common goal of creating a welcoming park experience for all.”

For the past nine years, the Center has reached more than 750,000 youth and their families through school field trips, public workshops, after-school programs, summer camps, and youth leadership internships. The total number of youth served annually at the Center site is approximately 8,500. Many of the Center’s program graduates continue in careers in the park and throughout the environmental and public service sectors. “Crissy Field Center provides a ladder of learning for youth to find their professional passion and opportunities to develop ‘green’ job skills by getting involved in creating a more sustainable society for all,” said Christy Rocca, director of Crissy Field Center. “This new temporary location will provide a unique opportunity to demonstrate sustainable practices in our everyday operations. It features a living roof and we are looking to include solar panels and wind turbines at a future date.”

You can view additional details and updates by visiting the National Park Service website at http://parkplanning.nps.gov/goga or www.crissyfield.org. Additional questions regarding the Crissy Field Center relocation can be directed to (415) 561-7752.  For more information on the Doyle Drive roadway replacement project, please visit www.doyledrive.org.

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Crissy Field Center is a partnership of the Golden Gate National Parks Conservancy and the National Park Service. Crissy Field Center programs encourage new generations to become bold leaders for thriving parks, healthier communities and a more environmentally just society. The National Park Service cares for special places saved by the American people so that all may experience our heritage. Established in 1981, the Golden Gate National Parks Conservancy is the nonprofit partner that supports and assists the Golden Gate National Parks in research, interpretation, and conservation programs. 

Media Contacts
Parks Conservancy: David Shaw (415) 561-3064; dshaw@parksconservancy.org
National Park Service: Rich Weideman (415) 561-4730; Rich_Weideman@nps.gov

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About the Golden Gate National Parks Conservancy
The Parks Conservancy is the nonprofit membership organization created to preserve the Golden Gate National Parks, enhance the experiences of park visitors, and build a community dedicated to conserving the parks for the future. The Conservancy is an authorized “cooperating association” of the National Park Service, and is one of more than 70 such nonprofit organizations working with national parks around the country. To learn more, please visit www.parksconservancy.org or call (415) 561-3000.

About the National Park Service
The National Park Service (NPS) is a federal agency within the U.S. Department of the Interior charged with managing the preservation and public use of America’s most significant natural, scenic, historic, and cultural treasures. The NPS manages the Golden Gate National Parks, as well as 394 other park sites across the U.S. For more information, visit www.nps.gov/goga or call (415) 561-4700.