As progress on the Central Subway moves forward underneath Stockton Street, up a couple blocks in Union Square the new line's most visible station looks to be heading for its inevitable day in court. The Rec & Parks Commission, which has to approve the project because it sits on park property, signed off on the design yesterday. However, Save Muni, who have been threatening to sue the city over the station for months now, say they're gearing up to go to court.
According to Rec & Park Commission president Mark Buell, Muni made a number of requested changes before the commission unanimously approved the station design yesterday. As Buell told the Examiner, "We’re not making judgments on whether the proposed transit system is right or wrong... We’re just weighing in on if the station design is appropriate for the park."
Save Muni on the other hand, still believe they have some legal ground to stand on, saying the station cannot be placed on park property because the transit hub does not serve "a recreational purpose" as required by the city charter. (Taking a train to the ballpark is not, apparently, a recreational purpose according to Save Muni.) The City Attorney has already shot down that argument, citing a legal opinion from 1981 in which the City was allowed to place manhole covers in public parks.
Still, Save Muni sounds pretty determined to beat the subway in to the ground. As Chief Oppositionist Leader Jerry Cauthen told the Ex, "We don’t see how this meets the requirements of the City Charter. Right now, there are people gathering money together for a possible lawsuit. If The City continues to stonewall us, we really have no other alternative."