The GAP Museum: Lament for a Bowling Alley

Today marks the anniversary of Juan Bautista de Anza's “discovery” of the Presidio. The former army headquarters have gone through several changes and is due for a few more. If you are unlucky enough to belong to one of the bowling leagues that meets at Presidio Bowl, you know you have about a year left to enjoy the out-of-the-way venue. Because in 2009, billionaire Don Fisher, founder of the GAP, is going to put a big white box where the bowling alley used to be. Fisher's plans to build a museum to warehouse his art collection were approved in January and the design, by architect Richard Gluckman, kind of looks like a big refrigerator. It's been a source of controversy ever since, and in an article that ran last week in the Chronicle, Gluckman admits that “People complain the building looks cold and white and stark. In those images, it does.” He will unveil brand new plans next month. There are a lot of complaints surrounding the approval of the museum, not the least of which is the corporatization of the Presidio. The museum will sit only a parking lot away from the new Disney offices. But the biggest loss to the city will be the Presidio Bowl. Presdio Bowl makes up exactly half of all the city's bowling alleys. (click 'more')

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