Stephanie Houston Design Urbanista
is scouting out the next vacant lot/storefront
What are you up to these days? Most of my time lately is divided between NOMADgardens, a roaming community garden, event, workshop space in Mission Bay, and designing the offices at the amazing SF HUB in the old Chronicle Building. I recently took a hiking trip with some good friends in the Sierra Nevadas – Secret Lake. We carried too much in our packs and just about killed ourselves. And learned a very valuable lesson in packing light.
SF is... where I’ve always wanted to be, but never thought I’d end up.
Where do you get your local gossip? I’m not good about keeping up with local gossip, but if it had to be one, it would be Curbed SF or East SF. As an architectural designer (not yet licensed), I like to stay abreast of any new buildings that might need my design eye. I religiously read The Urbanist – SPUR’s newsletter. It’s the best way to keep up with politics and the cool cats in town.
Why do you love your neighborhood? I actually love two neighborhoods Cole Valley - where I live - and Mission Bay, my previous home and the new home to NOMADgardens! I LOVE the residential feeling in Cole Valley. It’s quiet, great restaurants, a stones throw to Golden Gate Park and I can practically hike in my back yard. Who needs anything else really? Mission Bay has wonderful waterfront access, Mission Creek kayaking and house boats…and, of course, the Giants. Living there while they won the World Series had to be one of my top five events of my life. I think they are in first place as of today. Woot Woot!
What's your favorite SF institution? As a lover of modern design and Herzog De Meuron, I crush on the De Young Museum – the bench that turns into the gift shop, the cracks that lead you to the entrance, the interior green courtyard, and the tower. I’m in heaven.
What do you get obsessive about here in SF? I Iove the overhead wires of the MUNI lines. And all of the sounds! I’d love to have an artist put together the ‘Sounds of San Francisco.’ Maybe someone already already has? When I am away, I miss the MUNI, the bus stops, the subway.