Mission Dolores Park Improvements

Mission Dolores Park Site Plan


Mission Dolores Park will be transformed into the world-class park that San Franciscans deserve. Improvements to the park will focus on facilities, sports areas, and the general infrastructure. These include:

– New Restrooms with expanded capacity
– Renovated Tennis and Basketball Courts
– New Multi-use Court
– Improved designated Off-Leash Dog Play Areas
– New Bike Racks
– New Pathways
– New Overlook in the Southwest corner
– Improved Irrigation
– Improved ADA Access
– Improved 18th Street Entrance

Click here to print a 1-page summary and concept design map of the project.

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For nearly a century San Franciscans have enjoyed the 13.7-acres of recreational opportunities provided by Mission Dolores Park. To help keep up with the use of the park and make much-needed infrastructure improvements, over 71 % of San Francisco voters approved the 2008 Clean and Safe Neighborhood Parks Bond, a $185 million general obligation bond that includes $13.2 million to improve Mission Dolores Park; the total budget was $20.5 million.

Every day a wide variety of people visit and enjoy Mission Dolores Park. From local Mission residents to visitors from nearby neighborhoods such as Noe Valley and the Castro, many San Franciscans consider Dolores Park to be the City’s front yard. Add to that the many events hosted at the park throughout the year, and it’s easy to see why so many people, San Francisco residents and visitors alike, cherish Dolores Park.

The San Francisco Recreation and Parks Department shares the community’s passion for Dolores Park. We are at the beginning of an exciting new chapter for Mission Dolores Park and hope to work with you to create a new Mission Dolores Park; one with vastly improved facilities, a new play area, and an infrastructure that maintains the familiar and comforting identity while also allowing our staff the infrastructure to keep the park clean, safe, and fun!


The well-loved amenities of Dolores Park are in need of significant renovation. From mostly invisible infrastructure such as irrigation and drainage improvements to the more apparent needs for improved tennis courts and pathways, across the board there are improvement needs. Some of the changes will have a direct impact on how we use the park, while other improvements will support our maintenance staff to enable them to maintain the park more efficiently and effectively.

These changes could not have happened without conversation with the community of Mission Dolores Park users. With your help, this park will soon be as good as new.

If you would like to volunteer and help keep Mission Dolores Park clean and safe please contact RPD Volunteer Office at http://sfrecpark.org/support-your-parks/volunteer-program/.

Dolores Park is Opening!

In 2 short weeks, the north side of the park will reopen! It’s time to celebrate! Please join us for an opening celebration on Thursday June 18th from 3:00pm – 7:00pm. In the spirit of Leave No Trace, the opening celebration will be a Silent Disco Party. Wireless headphones will be loaned to attendees … Continue reading

SF Gate: Fixing the culture problem at Dolores Park

By Elizabeth Creely Roughly 30 concerned neighbors gathered at the event space 18 Reasons Tuesday for an event hosted by San Francisco’s Department of Recreation and Parks. Among the collection of local employees, neighbors and merchants, was an air of seriousness in the room, which suited the matter under discussion: … Continue reading

SFist: Rec & Parks Produces Goofy PSAs To Encourage Proper Trash Disposal, Bathroom Use

By Jay Barmann The Rec & Park Department hosted a pair of meetings Tuesday to engage concerned neighbors about their new “action plan” for dealing with the park’s ongoing popularity, and its trash problem. And as Mission Local reports, Sarah Ballard, the department’s director of policy and public affairs, admitted, … Continue reading

SF Appeal: Waste-Sorting System Unveiled To Help Dolores Park Picnickers Stop Littering

By Bay City News A pop-up recycling and composting system was unveiled today in response to an abundance of litter left behind by picnickers at San Francisco’s Dolores Park. The San Francisco Recreation and Park Department, in partnership with the waste management company Recology, has placed large containers on Dolores … Continue reading

Mission Dolores Park – Construction Update

The last 2 weeks have shown incredible progress at the park, with large sections of grass sod placed. Our on-site staff and contractors are constantly stopped and asked if it’s artificial turf. To clarify:  it’s real grass! There is still work to be done in the north half, including finishing the sports … Continue reading

Mission Dolores Park – Sod Installation

Today is another big construction milestone at the park – the remaining sections of the north side of the park are receiving grass sod. The contractor should finish the installation this week, and then repair the sections that were damaged by last month’s vandalism. Check out photos and use this link to view a short video of today’s … Continue reading

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Project FAQs

What is the project schedule for the overall improvement project?

The current schedule is:

Phase Target Start Target Finish Duration
Contract Documents Jan-13 Sept-13 8 Months
Bid / Award Oct-13 Jan-14 3 Months
Construction Winter-14 Summer-15 13 Months
Closeout July-15 Sept.-15 2 Months

There are a number of variables that may still impact this schedule but this is the general outline of our process and we intend to stick to it as closely as possible.

I keep hearing that there are multiple projects happening in the park but that doesn't seem to make sense. How many projects are actually happening?

First, a word about why there are two projects.

Recreation and Park Department included Mission Dolores Park in the 2008 Bond Program and $13.2 Million were allocated toward improvements to the park. Around the same time, an ambitious and wonderful group of Mission Dolores parents and neighbors convened and began fundraising around a full-scale renovation of the playground. The playground group received a large financial gift from the Helen Diller Foundation and plans to complete their project sooner than when the bond schedule would allow the overall Mission Dolores Park improvement project to begin. For this reason, the playground project moved ahead and is completed and open to the public.

There will be two design and construction project happening concurrently at Mission Dolores Park. The first is the playground improvement project. That project started in 2007 and has been lead by the Friends of Dolores Park Playground with help from the Neighborhood Parks Council. The design for playground is near completion and the current schedule is for the project to go out to bid in February 2011.

Is it true that RPD is closing Dolores Park for 2 years?

No. We do have a nearly 2-year construction schedule shown above, but this is for the completion of all improvements. We intend to close areas of the park as needed for construction. Part of the reason the schedule appears to be so long is that the clubhouse/restroom building renovation will take longer than the general landscape/park improvements. As we develop the improvement plan with the community, we will be able to fully articulate the phased closure and improvement plan.

You said there was $13.2 Million allocated for Mission Dolores Park in the bond, but the reports and all other information refers to an $11.7 Million project. Where did the other $1.5 Million go?

$1.5 Million of the $13.2 Million from the bond budget was allocated to the playground during the bond planning process. When the Friend of Dolores Park Playground agreed to partner with RPD to improve the playground, RPD determined that the $1.5 Million should still be dedicated to the playground. This funding is included in the $3.75 Million budget for the playground project. An additional $7.3 million was needed to finish the project,due to additional issues, such as extended soil remediation and construction cost increase.

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