Return of the Alley

This is old news for most people, but in case you didn’t know, La Mission neighborhood in SF is getting its own bowling alley. This is another one of those activities that white people (and others) without money (or desire) to go to Las Vegas partake in. The alley’s being constructed by long-time bowling afficionados from Brooklyn.

So imagine my delight to find an old SF Biz Journal article quoting Phil Tagami as attempting to source a grocery and bowling alley for the Uptown neighborhood. Yes, that was 2009, but we are finally getting Xolo Taqueria this spring, which is also in the same article.

Now, I’d love to see bowling downtown. And I get plenty of laughs for this from a few crotchety folks in the ABetterOakland peanut gallery.

It’s not that I’m good at bowling or do it often.  There just is a crying need for things to do downtown other than walk past Sears’ unimaginative display windows, jog around the lake, drink like a lush, visit the OMCA, buy veggies at the farmers’ market and catch shows.

It doesn’t matter to me whether such an alley moves into Jack London Square to complement pirate ship tours and the movie theater, or if it’s by the Paramount and Fox theaters.  It probably makes more sense to have up here though, as our small-boats port should be reserved for more water sports and industry related activities.

Other good reasons to have a bowling alley in downtown Oakland:

  • Provide people a constructive, non-sedentary nightlife activity without alcohol and cigarettes
  • Cut leakage of sales revenue to Albany and other cities WITH bowling alleys; Oakland/Emeryville/Richmond/SF getting their own Target is a good example of this
  • Bowling alleys use less energy than flying to Las Vegas, and are at least as fun
  • Commercial/Retail Balance: downtown Oakland hasn’t reached saturation for bars and (especially) restaurants yet but there needs to be something else to do around here… I’m not a fan of drinking every single night.  Yes there’s 24 Hour Fitness, the lake, one or two movie theaters nearby… otherwise what do we have? Unfinished condos, empty car lots, Koreatown and Piedmont Ave!

Here’s hoping!

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