Outreach for Homeless at Transbay Terminal

SAN FRANCISCO (KCBS) _ The Transbay Terminal will be closed shortly after midnight, as crews prepare to demolish the aging facility.

But San Francisco homeless advocates said they plan to continue outreach efforts to help those who sleep at the terminal.

Dozens have relied on the facility for shelter and will now have to go elsewhere.

Click to listen

Many have said they’re glad the old terminal is set for demolition.

“In the beginning, I think it was kind of safe. But as time went on, different people from different cities have come over,” said one homeless man.

San Francisco’s Director of Homeless Policy Dariush Kayhan said there are about 50 regulars that the city has been reaching out to over the past couple of weeks.

He said of those, about 35 have been moved to shelters.

“This is definitely a dug-in group. The last few folks are possibly skeptical of what we’re offering or just feeling that the Transbay Terminal has worked for them for so many years or just one more night,” said Kayhan.

The last buses are scheduled to leave the Transbay Terminal just after midnight.

Immediately after that, work crews will close off access and start installing a fence around the facility.

  • james campbell

    As a child growing up in the East Bay, I would ride the Greyhound Bus, alone, to San Francisco during the Holiday Season to shop for Christmas presents. There was no BART or ferry boat service in those days, so the Transbay Terminal was where I would depart the bus and catch it for the ride home. The Terminal was alive with activity back then. There was a shoeshine stand where men in three-piece suits would read the Chronicle in the morning or the Examiner in the afternoon, smoking big cigars while having their shoes attended to. There were news-stands that sold daily papers, magazines, gum, cigarettes, postcards of the City and the occassional banana, apple and orange. The Transbay Terminal also had a small diner counter where you could get breakfast, a burger for lunch or just a cup of coffee. The Terminal was so alive, even though the Key System electric train had stop taking passengers back-‘n-forth across the Bay Bridge to the East Bay. I never worried about my safety because there were always uniformed policemen patrolling the Terminal. I remember asking one Officer for directions to the Financial District where my Dad worked. Years later, when I started working in San Francisco, I road the same Greyhound Bus service to the Transbay Terminal in the City because BART hadn’t completed the transbay tube. The Terminal still had a little bit of life still in her, but I could see things changing. The diner was all but gone. The paper stand was showing signs of fatigue and the shoeshine man was looking for business, instead of being busy. One night, in 1976 after working late, I strolled through the Terminal to catch the last bus to Oakland. I was early, having missed the previous bus by minutes, so I decided to “take-in” the peace and solitude of the Transbay Terminal and try to rekindle the memories and excitement I had felt in the place as a child. I could see all of the patrons scurrying past, the greasy-spoon cooks at the diner, the shoeshiner’s cracking the cloth rags as they brought life back to men’s shoes, the news-stand barker shouting out the headlines of a Giants win or a Niner’s loss. Well, my bus finally came that night and I left the terminal for the last time. I changed jobs and started riding BART shortly thereafter.

    Well, those days are gone, but I’m happy to say; not forgotten. I will always carry fond memories of the Transbay Terminal with me for as long as I live. Good bye old girl, you were always good to me and I will always remember you fondly!

blog comments powered by Disqus
Guide To The Holidays
Shine A Light On The Holiday Season With ‘Giving Tuesday’

Listen Live