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Green Envy

September 5, 2017


San Francisco is known around the world as a “green” city. It consistently tops the lists of the most sustainable and environmentally friendly places to live—in publications like Travel + Leisure and Popular Science. It’s easy to see why: there’s a focus on clean energy, as exemplified by residences like the LEED-certified condos at 181 Fremont. It also has one of the best recycling programs in the US, and it consistently promotes sustainable farm-to-table dining via restaurants like Rich Table. But SF is also hued green, thanks to swaths of lush parks like sprawling Golden Gate Park, myriad gardens, and a commitment from the city to provide verdant relaxation for its citizens.

Whether you’re grabbing a post-work bottle of wine at Cask or brunching on the Bay at nearby Waterbar, there’s always a grassy respite awaiting you—although that might not always be apparent. Many neighborhoods, including the lively streets of SoMa, belie hidden gardens that are just an escalator- or elevator-ride away from your condo at 181 Fremont. Like many highly populated cities, San Francisco forces urban designers to think about using space very efficiently (often vertically). And the result may be a charming and relaxing public area like the plaza at 303 2nd Street, which is a veritable pleasure garden with alcoves, a pretty fountain, and plenty of benches that are perfect for a lunchtime break. If you like more of an industrial vibe while you relax on a patch of grass, Warm Water Cove gives you a unique place to unwind and take in some interesting architecture right on the Bay.

Enjoy the temperate climes of the Bay Area from high above the city at the soon-to-be-completed Salesforce Transit Center’s living roof-park space. City Park will be a 5.4-acre public space replete with gardens, walking trails, and a glade for lounging on a blanket and getting some sun. This park will not only be good for your spirit but good for the environment; it filters pollution. And those who live at 181 Fremont will have the added (and exclusive) convenience of direct access to the park via a skybridge from their building.

For those who want to do more than just enjoy the surrounding flora, simply roll up your sleeves and dig in at a community farm like Alemany Farm, which was way ahead of the “urban farming movement” curve. Since 1995, this former dumping ground has provided volunteers a chance to support the community via educational initiatives and healthy food.

The Recreation and Parks Commission of SF maintains and continually updates the city’s green spaces to make them look good and to make them more sustainable and environmentally friendly. Recently, the Commission reopened the Twin Peaks hiking trail after they made improvements to prevent erosion and maintain wildlife habitats, showing yet again that it is easy to be green in San Francisco—and easy to soak up the green when you live at 181 Fremont.