6th and Jessie (Image Source: Local Live)
A reader asks:

I understand that a new 15-story hotel with ground floor retail is being planned in the vicinity of 6th and Jessie. Do you know any more about this? The rumor is also that the public is being invited to comment this month.

Unfortunately we can’t answer (hey, it happens). It is, however, hard not to notice that big old surface area parking lot and adjoining empty lot. Readers?
UPDATE: Cheers to the plugged-in readers who nailed the answer: 942 Mission (between 5th and 6th). As proposed, a 13 (or 15 depending upon the source) story hotel with 7,840 (or 3,240) square feet of ground floor retail and 165 (or 172) rooms.
942 Mission (Image Source: Local Live)

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Comments from “Plugged-In” Readers

  1. Posted by Grimwood

    I’d really love to see that happen, but think it would be a brave/foolish move at any time – let alone now (I’m assuming that this is meant to be a “regular” hotel, catering to out-of-towners with some green … if the plan is to build yet another’outsource’ hotels for city homeless care, that’s another matter, as that, at least, is sure to be a growth business).
    The block b/w Mission & Market on 6th is one of the last truly creepy patches of SF left anywhere in the northeasterly area (along with a shrinking patch of the Tenderloin). The gravitational pull of gentrification says that someday, this centrally-located zone will blossom into the sort of place that visitors would be pleased (or at least not utterly mortified) to call home for a couple of days. But this area stubbornly resisted that pull throughout the craziest two run-up’s that SF has seen in property values and “gentry” density since the Gold Rush. And as well all know, the gentrification machine is now firmly set to “off” until further notice…
    A hotel could get high occupancy despite being in an area like this if most of its competitors were sold out nightly and charging exorbitant rates due to overwhelming demand (much as a cramped 2/1 on the wrong side of the summit of Potrero Hill could once command well north of $1MM from hopeful buyers). But something tells me that’s not what will happen to city-wide hotel demand during the worst recession since the 30′s.
    Anyway – that’s just a non-hotelier’s biz case. All of that said, who knows how a brave/foolish hotel company would think about this. They could have their long-term caps on & figure that this block will surely be as cheery as South Park within a few short years, due to its great proximity to the Real SF. Trouble is, it took SP a good decade+ to get as spruced up as it is, despite being situated at Ground Zero of the online media boom and coming into its own when there was nothing but growth as far as the eye could see. This block sat that round out – and my own sense is that it could be decades before I’d advise any visitor to pick a hotel there given (literally) any alternatives whatsoever…
    But people do crazy (or brave) things all the time. So yeah – I wouldn’t be surprised if someone’s looking at this cesspool and thinking “hotel”…

  2. Posted by BDB

    The only way I can see this working is if you get to it by walking from 5th along Jessie. So through Mint Plaza, and then do some work on Jessie with lighting and make it an extension of Mint Plaza.
    Essentially remove the 6th street out of the picture.

  3. Posted by kthnxybe

    BDB is right. Unless you fill the hotel exclusively with people making a pilgrimage to Tu Lan.

  4. Posted by Jeffrey W. Baker

    There’s nothing in the minutes of the planning commission for this location, whether the address is considered to be on Jessie or Stevenson. What’s the evidence that something is going on here, other than rumor?

  5. Posted by Mole Man

    If there is such a plan, then it might be some agency thing like the building on Sixth at Howard. Ground floor retail units on that building face Sixth and have some sweet subsidies available. The idea is to kickstart redevelopment along Sixth, but the retail units have remained empty since they were built in 2005. Local residents are not big spenders and tend to scare away other customers.

  6. Posted by FormerAptBroker

    Back when I was in High School in the 1970′s I took the train in to the city to go to a store that sold used Levi’s 501s on Market Street. I ended up walking up 6th between Mission and Market and saw a lot of scary guys. That night I told my parents where I was and they both said “6th between Mission and Market has been a scary block since we started High School after the war”. Since I have been involved in real estate since I was a kid I am amazed how not many neighborhoods change very much even over long periods of time…

  7. Posted by AlexG

    There’s no financing for new hotels in any SF location now. Hotel rates and occupancy levels have declined and will decline further. Why build more?

  8. Posted by MintResident

    I live at Mint Lofts and got a notice in the mail earlier this month for a hotel going up at 942 Mission St. Case No. 2008.1097E. It didn’t say what type of hotel (crackhead or not) except that it would be a 15-story hotel with 3,240 sf of ground floor retail and 72,000 sf of hotel space. 172 rooms. Entrances on Mission and Jessie streets. Contact Carol Roos for more info. Let me know if you want her email and phone number.

  9. Posted by intheknow

    as stated by MintResident, the proposal is at 942 Mission, which is much closer to 5th St/Mint Plaza than to 6th Street. The big parking lot is owned by Nordstroms, who has always fantasized about building a big-honking above-grade parking garage, which is exactly what this area needs. If there’s something that will really pick this area up and is a good use of scarce land in downtown SF, it’s a huge parking garage! (tongue firmly planted in cheek)

  10. Posted by Jim

    There have been a variety of plans over the last decade for this site. A few months ago, new renderings were presented for its development. The site belongs to NRG Corporation, the firm that owns the central steam plant on that block that provides the steam heat to the civic center and a portion of downtown. At various times, they have had plans to expand the steam plant onto the portion now used as Nordstrom’s valet parking. The site would accommodate the steam plant, parking in a structure, and non-profit social service office space on the ground floor. That being said, its pretty unlikely that anyone is about to finance anything there. The idea of a hotel is absurd.

  11. Posted by Pete

    Planning commission pipeline doc says visitor hotel

  12. Posted by Anon

    942 Mission Street is the site of the old kink.com headquarters (aka the Porn Palace) before they moved to the Armory. I think it was sold when kink.com moved to the Armory a while back and now it looks like it is proposed for a hotel. The NRG steam generation site Jim mentions is across the street from 942 Mission Street on Jessie next to Mezzanine club and does not appear to be part of this proposal (or is it?).

  13. Posted by Jonathan Hart

    Here’s the relevant info:
    2008.0197
    942 MISSION ST
    Case No.
    Project Name
    Cross Streets 5th/6th STS
    Sponsor Michael Stanton
    Description Demolition of 17,000 square feet of commercial (film) use, construction of a 13-story hotel w/165 tourist hotel rooms, 63,286 sf hotel space, and 7,840 sf of retail and public space.
    Project is 46,126 gsf and building height 103 feet. Parcel Number 3704 015 Zoning
    Doesn’t appear to be an SRO.. yay!

  14. Posted by MintRenter

    I am thinking of moving to the Mint Plaza. The units seem very nice. Does anyone have any feedback about the area to live in or how the building is managed?

  15. Posted by flaneur

    Not an SRO. Motel 6 then – for business travelers in the new economy?

  16. Posted by Jimmy (No Longer Bitter)

    It’ll be a “$300-night 3* luxury hotel” which you can get for $50/night by bidding on Priceline.com.

  17. Posted by Jonathan Hart

    I live on the other side of 6th by soma grand and go through mint plaza all the time. I love that area but have to walk through the “sh*tpatch” to get there.
    So long as you don’t need to head west for anything, Mint Plaza rocks. Just be weary of how close you are to the the patch cause just on the other side of Mezzanine things get shady.

  18. Posted by Dan

    If this gets built, it will be great for Mint Plaza. The lot is a ways from 6th Street, and is plausible for a tourist hotel, as tourists can go to and from the Union Square area and the mall via Mint Plaza. It is very close to Moscone Center West. Will be interesting to see whether this gets built.

  19. Posted by Jonathan Hart

    I sincerely hope so. Have you seen the buildings that occupy that space on Mission? Boarded up and abandoned SROs, a sweatshop (when they forget to close the front door) right down the street and a homeless guy who likes to practice some generic form of martial arts by himself.

  20. Posted by Dave

    I don’t think anybody builds an SRO hotel, do they? Old hotels sometimes devolve into that usage, but I can’t imagine that would pencil out for new construction. Maybe I’m wrong. But I always imagined that most of the SRO hotels were visitor hotels (not nice visitor hotels, perhaps) back in their day.

  21. Posted by Brutus

    ^^^Not really. Back in the day there were hotels and there were SRO hotels, which offered cheaper accomodations for weekly and monthly guests, primarily. They were used for laborers that were here for extended periods but planned to leave, or for folks that couldn’t afford an apartment (SRO hotels were typically cheaper than apartments because there was/is usually only one bathroom per floor shared by all rooms).
    They’re still built in other countries, not so much here.

  22. Posted by Brutus

    One more thing – think of modern day hostels as the replacement to SROs of old in the US and Europe. Hostels today offer a similar service to what SROs did in the past.

  23. Posted by Jonathan Hart

    Someone more curious than I will have to do the homework for a definitive answer, but I believe there is an SRO planned on Natoma near 7th st.

  24. Posted by The Milkshake of Despair

    There’s a 111 unit SRO development planned just outside of downtown San Jose. The development notice explicitly states that it will be “single room occupancy”
    So yes, there are purpose built SROs.

  25. Posted by warehouse

    Cubix at 766 Harrison is an SRO. (seriously…)

  26. Posted by pagebike

    The Rentboard is making sure the 6th street neighborhood never improves. I have tenants who inherited their units through the family: great grandmothers, to great aunts, to grand parents and now to their children, and fully expecting that their inheritance rights will continue indefinitely through some deft scams worked in conjunction with well-timed rent board complaints. Thank Chris Daly.

  27. Posted by pagebike

    The Rentboard is making sure the 6th street neighborhood never improves. I have tenants who inherited their units through the family: great grandmothers, to great aunts, to grand parents and now to their children, and fully expecting that their inheritance rights will continue indefinitely through some deft scams worked in conjunction with well-timed rent board complaints. Thank Chris Daly.

  28. Posted by pagebike

    The Rentboard is making sure the 6th street neighborhood never improves. I have tenants who inherited their units through the family: great grandmothers, to great aunts, to grand parents and now to their children, and fully expecting that their inheritance rights will continue indefinitely through some deft scams worked in conjunction with well-timed rent board complaints. Thank Chris Daly.

  29. Posted by Robert

    ^^^ Given that rent control was passed in 1979, the reference to four generations is a bit dumb — not too many 7 year olds are having kids.
    Also, why would this affect 6th street more than other neighborhoods? We’ve had gentrification in several neighborhoods since 1979 — rent control hasn’t stopped this. Why would it stop it in this specific area?
    It sounds to me like you are blaming the city for your own misreading of the market. I personally like this area, but am under no illusions about the demographics.

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