Exploring San Francisco through the lens of city blocks, Blocker is a weekly series by Charles Hodgkins. Look for it on SFist each Wednesday, around the lunching hour.
View the map of all published Blocker episodes.
Blocker, No. 24: Front St. in the Financial District
As Financial District blocks go, the 200 block of Front St. is notable for the human scale on which it’s built. The tallest buildings here between Sacramento and California rise a mere five stories. There’s plenty of potted foliage to counteract those “concrete jungle” accusations often lobbed this neighborhood’s way. No less than three popular, sit-down restaurants line its sidewalks. And unlike how things get on canyon-shadowed Sansome St. two blocks to the west, sunlight enjoys more than 15 minutes of daily fame on this stretch of Front.
There’s more white-collar bustle than hustle occurring here toward the latter end of the lunch hour on an autumn Friday. Women slow their usual breakneck gait on the return to the office, while men dressed down to the eights in business-casual wear (it is a Friday, after all) appear to have dialed down their strides as well. Some women are decked out in heels and skirts, while others go less formal in flats and pants, but to their credit, it’s clear there’s no single look among them. The men? Not quite. We see the same striped shirt (always tucked in, of course) on three different men between the ages of 25-40 in under an hour.