|Above, a view of Market Street looking towards Powell Street Station. Photo by Armand Vaquer.|
It had been seven years since I last stepped foot in San Francisco, and the last time was generally just in the Japan Town area of the city. I was in San Francisco to take part in the "In The Footsteps of Godzilla" program at the Roxie Theater by the Japan Society of Northern California.
This time, I was in the area of 5th and Market Street which is home to the Powell Street cable car station. Before being picked up by the airport shuttle, I took a stroll around the area.
|Above, an eastward view of Market Street. Photo by Armand Vaquer.|
Speaking of the cable cars, I saw none in operation. Apparently, they were undergoing repair at the time (see below). However, the electric-powered streetcar system was fully in operation.
|Above, a sign of cable car safety tips at Powell Station. Photo by Armand Vaquer.|
The Japan Society of Northern California booked me at the Pickwick Hotel, which is across the street from the old (and now closed) San Francisco Mint and caddy-corner from the offices of the San Francisco Chronicle. The Pickwick is a nice hotel and some rooms are currently being renovated.
The old Mint Building is in the process of being renovated, although I saw no evidence of this. Homeless people sleep on the building's east steps and the "delightful" odor of urine is very much evident around the building.
|Above, an electric streetcar on Market Street. Photo by Armand Vaquer.|
|Above, Powell Street looking north. Note the cable car tracks. Photo by Armand Vaquer.|
Within a block of the Pickwick Hotel is the Westfield San Francisco Centre with a number of upper-scale stores including Neiman-Marcus, Bloomingdales and Nordstrom.
|Above, the Pickwick Hotel. Photo by Armand Vaquer.|
The section of Market Street is tree-lined and has it has a nice atmosphere to it. In looking at the Bay City Guide, this section of San Francisco is the Union Square District.
|Above, the offices of the San Francisco Chronicle. Photo by Armand Vaquer.|
|Above, the old San Francisco Mint. Photo by Armand Vaquer.|
During my stroll on Powell Street, I saw signs indicating that the cable cars begin their daily runs at 6:30 AM (they end at midnight). Unfortunately, according to a couple of clerks at a nearby Walgreen's, the Powell Street cable car line was undergoing repairs or maintenance at the time.
|Above, another northern view of Powell Street. Photo by Armand Vaquer.|
|Above, a streetcar with the Westfield San Francisco Centre in the background. Photo by Armand Vaquer.|