The journey from the Central Freeway to Octavia Boulevard and Beyond

San Franciscans Rising Up to Bring It Down

Photo by: SF Chronicle


It’s been over a decade and a half since the Central Freeway was demolished, and later replaced by Octavia Boulevard, Patricia’s Green and new housing. The removal of the freeway — perhaps the final chapter of the freeway revolt that began decades prior — is a pivotal part of the history of San Francisco and Hayes Valley, and still unknown to many.
The community has discussed for many years the possibility of telling this the story with a commemorative installation in Patricia’s Green or along the Boulevard. With this in mind, the Market/Octavia Citizens Advisory Committee (MOCAC), in partnership with the San Francisco Planning Department and San Francisco Parks Alliance (SFPA), has undertaken an exploration under the name of the “Market/Octavia Historic Commemorative Project”. This group has meanwhile created this playfully-named site to share in interactive and visual form the history of activism and groundbreaking changes to the built environment that continue to shape our lives here. Learn more about the project in the Market/Octavia Historic Commemorative Project Report HERE


Inspire and empower future San Franciscans to realize that, through civic engagement of the freeway removal in the Market / Octavia area, you can change the city for the better! 

Looking to the Future

The Selection Panel has chosen Envelope + Mark Baugh-Sasaki as the design team to carry the Market Octavia Commemorative Project forward. As we work to create a permanent “Commemoration” along Octavia Boulevard, we want to remember, perhaps “never forget” what it means for ordinary citizens to rise up and take action, setting in motion the demolition of the Central Freeway in the face of many barriers.  The Market Octavia Commemorative Project will need ongoing support, collaborative input, and leadership of community stakeholders to succeed. Join us!

Explore Map

Take a walk through the area and through time. Click on pins to see what was there before and what is there now.

Explore History

Learn about the area’s most historic moments


March 12: Octavia Historic Commemoration Project RFP Announced
April 30: First Round Design Submittal Deadline
June 4: Semi-Finalist Selection
June 23: Preliminary Concept Review Community Meeting
July 7: Semi-Finalist Interviews by Octavia Committee + Selection Panel
July 23: Final Round Design Submittal Deadline
July 28: Final Design Review Community Meeting
July 28 – August 27: Public vote and feedback
October 20: Announcement for next steps
*all dates subject to change

Get Involved

The story of the Central Freeway lives on through our residents and in our neighborhood. This means you! Be on the lookout for community meetings and events in 2021 to discuss commemorative design options and other neighborhood commitments. 



Be a part of history

✨ Help our community commemorate the past and envision the future of the Market / Octavia neighborhood 

Your donations will help sustain art, programming, and pedestrian focused capital improvements – help us reach our goal!