July 16, 2009

700 Valencia: Topped Off And Filling Out

700 Valencia: 7/15/09 (www.SocketSite.com)

700 Valencia has topped off and is filling out. And based on the framing, the fourth floor facade looks to have changed ever so slightly from its original design.

700 Valencia Street: The Details And Designs For Moving Forward [SocketSite]

First Published: July 16, 2009 7:30 AM

Comments from "Plugged In" Readers

So what? A rendering is not a contract.

[Editor’s Note: No "so" (and we missed the part where we harangued it for being different), it’s simply an observation for those who are following its development.]

Posted by: flaneur at July 16, 2009 7:58 AM

Much better than a parking lot. I hope the builder uses something interesting on the exterior.

Posted by: CameronRex at July 16, 2009 8:50 AM

It looks like the top floor got set back a few feet, which is good news for the daylight plane and might also improve the livability of the top floor units even though it will reduce floor area. It seems unlikely that the "rendering is not a contract" observation might be made relevant given that the only party giving up anything by this apparent change is the developer.

Posted by: Mole Man at July 16, 2009 9:30 AM

Hang on there flaneur, this might be SocketSite's journalistic peak, at least it provides some respite from the constant snickering at "apples". You go SocketSite, you spot the differences.

[Editor’s Note: Ah, snap!]

Posted by: snickersnicker at July 16, 2009 9:32 AM

Construction on the bldg. has been slow from my POV the last month or more. My gut tells me its renewed sensitivity & slower approvals around "soft story" construction. Insiders tell me the condo's at 18th & Mission would not be approved, were they up for approval now, because "soft story" quake risk has become the new global warming in SF planning circles. But its just conjecture. No proof.

Posted by: stucco-sux at July 16, 2009 11:12 AM

"But its just conjecture. No proof."

Ummm, isn't everything on this site?

Posted by: Jimmy at July 16, 2009 12:03 PM

I would not consider this building to have a "soft-story". The ground floor construction is concrete, and can easily be designed to resist seismic forces. The "soft-story" is typically applied to all-wood construction.

Posted by: theNOB at July 16, 2009 12:18 PM

Too bad nothing interesting was done with the roofline.

Like most newer SF medium sized structures it looks boring.

Built to the lotline and then a few spindly trees planted at the edge of the sidewalk. No "intimacy" or street leave or roofline character.

Posted by: Douglas at July 16, 2009 1:32 PM

The "soft story" is not specific to wood frame construction.

Posted by: flaneur at July 16, 2009 2:47 PM

the used car lot was more interesting. it usually had some cool old t-birds and other interesting models kicking around. the ground level open space didn't lend itself to the bland claustrophobia this cookie-cutter POS will instill, and there was the cool sign on the side of Leather Tongue (sign has moved to Benders). why the hating on used car lots? do they make your ten dollar scone harder to digest? remember commerce? that thing where you could buy things from a business in your community? oh, right, I'm a Luddite.

Posted by: two beers at July 16, 2009 2:56 PM

I, for one, am pleased the facade articulation changed. now, i'm anxious to see what the facade material will be. it's gonna make it or break it, imo.

I also don't understand what sort of 'roofline character' might be, as referred by douglas.

the articulated and set back fourth floor actually gives decent roofline character. if you're thinking about some kind of wavy/ass-hat characteristics.. then i'm very pleased there's no roofline character.

Posted by: gabriel at July 16, 2009 4:32 PM

flaneur: agreed it is not specific to wood construction. I guess what I meant was that the problem lies with many of the older buildings here in the city of which the majority is wood-framed, and not a new building built to the seismic design criteria of the 2007 CBC.

Posted by: theNOB at July 16, 2009 5:10 PM

Anyone have a guess how quickly these units will sell and what the prices will be? What do people think about this location??

Posted by: Toadie at July 16, 2009 6:07 PM

More great restaurants within walking distance of this place than almost any location in the city.

Posted by: Dan at July 16, 2009 10:42 PM

hard to beat location.

Posted by: gabriel at July 16, 2009 11:27 PM

Great food, but is it a place people actually want to live? How much would a nice single-family house cost in this part of the Mission??

Posted by: Toadie at July 16, 2009 11:34 PM

stucco-sux
No building department would do a partial approval beyond a demo permit, so it's definitely nothing to do with soft stories and changing structural design mid-construction.
The term "soft story" is la mode these days because of talk of requiring retrofitting existing structures that have this condition. While you can technically build a new structure of a certain height with a soft story, you would have to make up for in strength. a) the structure was designed and approved for the current code and isn't going to change b) this isn't a soft story, anyway.

Posted by: kaya at July 17, 2009 1:04 PM

@two beers: The hating on used car lots is because they are usually ugly and decrepit -- as that lot was. It was just a bunch of junky cars, deteriorating signage, and a cheap shack surrounded by a chain link fence. It had absolutely zero visual appeal. Hopefully the ground floor retail that goes in here will be a more pleasing and neighborhood friendly form of commerce.

Posted by: NoeNeighbor at July 19, 2009 5:29 PM

A flat lot in a dense area is a sign of squatting. The owner is out of capital or ideas. For parking, you should have a (multi-story) garage, and for housing a multi-story building. So some of the hating comes from this; people want to see the land put to good use rather than kept as a lot.

Posted by: Robert at July 19, 2009 9:44 PM

I really don't care what it looks like as long as it's new and up to code. It's much better than looking at the homemade bed sheets signs hanging from windows nearby over the last three years venting against the project.

I wouldn't call those against the project luddites, but they are universally marginally employed (poet, artist, barista, etc.) and haven't contributed to society other than attempting to make clove cigarettes cool again.

Glad to see it finally get off the ground and some property tax and building fees generated rather than that eyesore of a junk car storage lot.

Posted by: Jimmy C at July 20, 2009 9:35 AM

"New and up to code" probably won't help the future residents of this building come the "big one". Longtime locals and history buffs know that most of this neighborhood sits atop the ancient lake known to the Spanish as Laguna de Manantial. This new condo sits uncomfortably near the site of the Valencia Street Hotel, scene of one of the most deadly incidents of the 1906 Earthquake and fire. The four-story wood frame structure sank into the ground within minutes with only its top story remaining. Most of the residents of the lower stories drowned or were incinerated as fire swept through the area. The death toll was estimated at 40 or more. Unfortunately, the same fate probably awaits this building in time, code or no code. For more info see:
http://www.sfcityguides.org/public_guidelines.html?article=317&submitted=TRUE&srch_text=&submitted2=&topic=Earthquakes

Posted by: colinM at July 25, 2009 1:48 AM

Could anyone who has had experience building something this size give us a guesstimate on when this project will be completed if the construction timeline in unhindered?

Posted by: auden at July 26, 2009 8:41 AM

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