May 14, 2012

55 Laguna: The Latest Rehabilitation Plans And Progress

55 Laguna Campus Aerial

Having purchased the former UC Berekely Extension campus at 55 Laguna last year, the new owners have filed an application to rehabilitate Richardson and Woods halls.

The proposal is to rehabilitate Richardson Hall for use as senior services, senior housing (40 dwelling units), and retail and/or office space in new excavated space created behind the Hermann/Laguna Street retaining wall; to rehabilitate Woods Hall for use as housing (21 dwelling units); and, to rehabilitate Woods Hall Annex for use as a community center.

55 Laguna: Richardson Hall Rendering 2012

At the exterior, the work at all three buildings will generally include creating several new wall openings, selective window replacement and/or modification, seismic upgrades, maintenance and repair work, and in‐kind roof repair and/or replacement.

The redevelopment and building of 413 housing units on the six acre Hayes Valley campus was first approved by Planning in 2008 and subsequently entitled.

55 Laguna Site Plan 2012

With respect to the latest designs for the buildings and open space to be built in the middle of the campus, which includes 109 apartments sponsored by Openhouse for low-income LGBT seniors, we’ll keep you plugged-in.

55 Laguna Back In Play [SocketSite]
55 Laguna: Approved On Appeal And In Front Of San Francisco’s BOS [SocketSite]

First Published: May 14, 2012 10:15 AM

Comments from "Plugged In" Readers

Nice project, but I think they could fit even more housing on such a big lot.

Posted by: Mark F. at May 14, 2012 11:47 AM

Mark F. are you not noticing all the future buildings indicated in the plan? This is only the first phase.

Posted by: curmudgeon at May 14, 2012 11:59 AM

I love the excavated storefronts. Activates the street and increases activity, even as it preserves the existing structure. Wonderful example of adaptive reuse.

Posted by: Alai at May 14, 2012 6:38 PM

Low income LGBT seniors? Why the hell are they segregating them by sexual preference? Sometimes this town is bizarre.

Posted by: JB at May 14, 2012 11:25 PM

Some LGBT seniors prefer to live in a gay-friendly environment. Chances are however, most of the residents won't be gay or lesbian.. Housing can't discriminate, and these will be very desirable units. For the few LGBT seniors lucky enough to win the lottery for a unit, at least their mostly straight neighbors and the staff are less likely to be homophobes.

Posted by: Dan at May 15, 2012 12:08 AM

I'm a gay dude and I agree with JB. Not that I want to see low income LGBT seniors sleeping in cardboard boxes, but It is one thing to provide housing for groups with specific medical needs (HIV+ etc.) and quite another to segregate people based on orientation. LGBT seniors are no more or less deserving of subsidized housing than straight ones. Well, at least they're not tearing the place down...

Posted by: yeah at May 15, 2012 7:06 AM

yeah, you must be a young gay dude or you must not know any senior gay dudes (or dudettes). Seniors face the prospect of re-entering the closet in most "care facilities". Most facilities are not gay-friendly. Many are run by religious groups, some of which are becoming less friendly by the week.

As to whether gay seniors are more or less deserving:

No doubt some had less rewarding careers than they would have had, had society not thrown them out of jobs.

No doubt some would have married a long, long time ago and built the sort of financial nest that cushions most retired couples, then surviving spouses.

No doubt a few lost everything to a vindictive family when a spouse died.

No doubt ALL of them paid more taxes all along the way than their straight counterparts.

Should they get special treatment? No. They should get equal treatment. Part of getting equal treatment might mean creating a place where they will be treated just like other seniors. Someday, it won't matter whether a gay man or lesbian spends his/her last years in a GBLT senior center in SF of an Adventist retirement home in Modesto. That day will not arrive even during your lifetime, let alone that of people who are already seniors.

Posted by: BobN at May 15, 2012 8:12 AM

^ thank you BobN

And as a previous poster noted, there is no legal way to segregate this, since it has public funds, so it is best to think of it as GBLT-friendly low-income senior facility.

Posted by: curmudgeon at May 15, 2012 10:37 AM

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