June 21, 2011
Approved For 17 Stories But 34 Trees For Now As Proposed
The 17-story story building proposed to be built at 55 9th Street was approved by the Planning Commission at the end of 2007, but the now grassed over ground on the lot between Market and Mission has yet to be broken behind its chain link fence.
On Thursday the project sponsor will seek a three-year extension and window in which to start construction on the building which was designed to yield 260 housing units, 3,000 square feet of ground-floor retail, and 113 parking spaces.
In conjunction, or perhaps exchange, for the extension, the project sponsor "has proposed an interim landscaping plan that would plant a mix of trees and understory along the 9th Street frontage, in order to soften and screen views of the site."
First Published: June 21, 2011 7:30 AM
Comments from "Plugged In" Readers
Glad to hear this is still in the works.
Much taller (despite mid-block location)
Otherwise bulky and unrealized.
Dare to become great SF...
Posted by: invented at June 21, 2011 7:52 AM
Meh, footprints ok, just needs to be 20-30 stories taller at least.
Posted by: anon at June 21, 2011 8:37 AM
Is all thise desire for "taller" some type of Chicago envy? Many great cities do not have Chicago/NYC skylines. All of this desire for taller, bigger, stronger, longer, reminds me of another type of envy.
Posted by: anonandon at June 21, 2011 8:56 AM
Um, I think the desire for the building to be taller is to realize the value in the land. That land was not cheap, by any means. Increase the density would be a better way to make use of the land (the one thing we don't have much of in SF). I don't think there is much envy of other cities, SF is great the way it is. Look at Mission Bay, the tallest building there is 8 stories and that's perfect the way it is. Not to mention we put quite reasonable height restrictions everywhere else.
Posted by: SFer at June 21, 2011 9:09 AM
Reminds me of another type of envy.
The envy we're seeking here through height will result in denser neighborhoods -- revitalized neighborhoods and businesses. Mid-market/Civic Center is a perfect location for more residents and this particular transit corridor location offers excellent option of car-free living. Why not seize the rare opportunity of such a rare development site in this important location strategically located betwn SOMA, Civic, Mid-M, etc? From purely a design standpt, this looks blocky and truncated, just like Saitowitz's flatiron proposed for 2 blocks away on Market. (imo)
Posted by: invented at June 21, 2011 9:27 AM
Chicago envy? No, the desire is for using the land appropriately. There are many places in Chicago where I'd be arguing for 40-50 stories more, since Chicago is even more under-built than SF and much less dense (but capable of adding density to move into SF's league).
Posted by: anon at June 21, 2011 9:37 AM
Definitely don't care about how things look on the skyline - if there were a way to build this to 100 stories and cloak the building in invisibility to appease folks who want to maintain views, I'd be fine with that.
I just want the increased density in an area that sorely needs it and has the infrastructure in place to handle it.
Posted by: Quizno at June 21, 2011 9:40 AM
I actually like the design, but 20 - 30 stories taller would be just "other envy" inducing! Go big or go home! And please use the slate-silver-blue-gray, whatever, windows like the Millenium. I so loooove that building!
Posted by: TallerBiggerStrongerBetter at June 21, 2011 10:01 AM
Bigger and taller buildings and more density means more work for my cousins in the trades, more opportunity for small businesses, and more work for the recent immigrants like my grandfather who labor, drive cabs, bus tables etc.
I prefer this sort of city to the museum variety but I think there is room here for both
Posted by: Zig at June 21, 2011 10:17 AM
I am all for 100 story buildings, especially transbay towers, but the question was, why must EVERY building shown on this site (except for OneRinconHill) be instantly dismissed as not being tall enough? This has nothing to do with wanting a museum city, and EVERYTHING to do with understanding that super tall towers are energy wasters. Not every parcel of land in San Francisco needs the maximum development possible. There is room in San Francico for mid-size buildings as well.
Posted by: anonandon at June 21, 2011 10:25 AM
@anonandon - if it were possible to build tall in many places, then I'd be fine with not wanting taller for every new proposal. However, since pretty much every proposal is either A)proposed to be the absolute maximum height allowable under the current zoning or B)asking for a change in the zoning to build higher, I can only assume that the market balance of taller buildings is not even close to being correct.
Zone the whole city to 100 stories, and I'm quite sure that many areas would never see buildings that tall.
Until then, I will absolutely ask for taller buildings in places like this that are walking distance from the CBD, and literally seconds away from the only heavy rail subway line in the city. Building taller here can take some pressure away from the Victorian/Edwardian museum zones.
Posted by: anon at June 21, 2011 10:47 AM
Wish they wouldn't bother "greening" these things. Nothing against trees per se, but put in a mini-park now and three years from now (or whenever they get around to building on it), people will start complaining that they're losing a park and their dog won't have anywhere to pee and the new building will block air and space and bla bla bla. Easier to just leave the lot vacant or sell it. IMO.
Posted by: Legacy Dude at June 21, 2011 10:49 AM
This looks like an office building. Zero curb appeal for a home. And what is the point of all that glass on the side that faces nothing but another building?
Posted by: bgelldawg at June 22, 2011 3:06 AM
"And what is the point of all that glass on the side that faces nothing but another building?"
To allow natural light in?
Posted by: The Milkshake of Despair at June 22, 2011 9:17 AM
That is one fugly building >:p
Posted by: sf at June 22, 2011 9:22 PM
Too officey for my taste. And that height on that sized lot could look awfully squat. Good location for more people though. It's been a dirt lot a long time.
Posted by: Turin at June 22, 2011 11:22 PM
AvalonBay is buying this project and plans to start building next summer:
Posted by: Dan at July 23, 2011 3:08 PM