October 25, 2013

The Preliminary Designs For Ten Stories At 16th And Mission


Once again, a 10-story building with 351 housing units, 32,000 square feet of retail and a 56,000-square-foot basement parking garage has been proposed to rise above the 16th Street Bart Station on the northeast corner of Mission Street, the preliminary design and massing for which is illustrated above and below.


The basement garage would contain 161 parking spaces, 39 spaces for the ground floor retailers and 122 spaces for the residential units, 88 of which would be stacked, with its entrance on Capp Street. The garage would also include space for 193 bikes.


First Published: October 25, 2013 10:15 AM

Comments from "Plugged In" Readers

Looks blocky and massive; less footprint & taller. Same number of units. (At least the Mission bldg.) Taller would be far more elegant and breathable.

Posted by: Invented at October 25, 2013 10:29 AM

Putting 351 units at this location, next to transit makes so much more sense than putting 320 units at 1601 Mariposa where there are limited transit options. Just saying.

Posted by: PHL at October 25, 2013 10:32 AM

So far so good -

I'd say go taller

Let's start by using a firehose on that corner

what a disaster

Posted by: mdg at October 25, 2013 10:33 AM

Putting 351 units at this location, next to transit makes so much more sense than putting 320 units at 1601 Mariposa where there are limited transit options. Just saying.

I think the 320 at 1601 Mariposa makes perfect sense. No idea why we're contemplating ONLY 351 units at this location though. Should be 1000+

Posted by: anon at October 25, 2013 10:40 AM

I believe it would be nice to include a green roof. In my opinion San Francisco lacks green roofs on buildings. I would also agree that its pretty blocky but so far so good.

Posted by: Alex at October 25, 2013 11:10 AM

Ten stories? With the housing crisis, this needs to be at minimum 25 stories....come on!

Posted by: Brian at October 25, 2013 11:10 AM

Those $80,000 BART salaries pensions healthcare overtime daycare expenses tuition retirement funds workers compensation aren't going to pay themselves.. taller taller taller!

Posted by: sf at October 25, 2013 11:35 AM

Over $2 billion in property taxes and counting!!!

Posted by: ed lee at October 25, 2013 11:39 AM

sf it is not BART property, so BART won't be making a dime from the implementation of the project. Perhaps you are simply counting future BART patrons, or perhaps you're just blowing hot air.

Posted by: curmudgeon at October 25, 2013 11:39 AM

don't taxes pay for BART? More housing = more people = more taxes = more BART employee benefits

Posted by: sf at October 25, 2013 11:44 AM

Looks like someone found out how to clean up this intersection - by rebuilding from the ground up!

What about the SF Unified-owned lot on Mission between 15th and 16th? It's another prime site for development.

Posted by: zouaf at October 25, 2013 11:50 AM

BART is funded primarily through sales tax and fares...so in an incredibly marginal way 500 or so more people will improve BART finances.

Posted by: curmudgeon at October 25, 2013 11:51 AM

I hope this will be a luxury building with 24x7 on-site security. Even though the property doesn't include the open sewer that is the BART "plaza" it would be nice if someone had a vested interest in the safety and sanitation of the neighborhood and actually might report the crimes on that location.

Posted by: formidable doer of the nasty at October 25, 2013 11:54 AM

should be 25+ floors. can people please try to think beyond 10 yrs from now? This building will be around for 100+. 10 floors is way way too low for this location

Posted by: moto mayhem at October 25, 2013 12:25 PM

This project could not happen soon enough. Sure, the building is boring, but that's pretty common of new buildings here. This building will be a very nice addition to this neighborhood and hopefully give BART incentive to improve their plazas as well.

Posted by: DS at October 25, 2013 12:34 PM

10 stories will be one of the tallest buildings that I can think of in the Mission. Let's be realistic with all this talk of 25 story buildings when there is a residential street on Capp. People are going to be fighting over 10 and this will end up at 5 stories

Posted by: zig at October 25, 2013 12:41 PM

This is great. Next I would like to see a lot more office space open up on Mission St between 16th and 24th. That would be AWESOME for the neighborhood.

Posted by: BigV at October 25, 2013 12:53 PM

Correct me if I'm wrong, but I believe that the soil doesn't allow for buildings any taller than this in most of the Mission.

Posted by: Schlub at October 25, 2013 1:00 PM

The interface, or lack thereof, with the BART station is unfortunate, cuz the station's going to be there... forever.

Still, better than what's there now.

Posted by: BobN at October 25, 2013 1:20 PM

You're wrong, Schlub. It's the same basic soil conditions as most of downtown & SOMA, which of course have a wide range of building heights. From the maps it looks like alluvial soil associated with Mission Creek might be under this site, although it's close to a more stable zone.


Posted by: curmudgeon at October 25, 2013 1:28 PM

Correct me if I'm wrong, but I believe that the soil doesn't allow for buildings any taller than this in most of the Mission.

Sorry, but you're wrong. There's nothing special about "Mission soil". Now, Mission Bay is a bit different, in that taller buildings require very deep pilings - but it's still quite possible there.

The Mission can handle as tall of a building as can be constructed anywhere - there are better conditions than the financial district, actually.

Posted by: anon at October 25, 2013 1:30 PM

SF is finally catching up to Walnut Creek in it's development philosophy. Bravo!

Posted by: sf at October 25, 2013 1:38 PM

It's probably the fault of the illustration, but this looks a bit fortress like, as if to protect the residents from the crime zombies just outside. Hopefully this will change. It feels suffocating.

I hope this trend of ripping out old and underutilized along transit becomes fast growing. Rather than hoping that efficient transit becomes available in nice areas, convert crappy areas into nice areas.

Posted by: Mike at October 25, 2013 3:03 PM

Terrific news, very nice SOM design. Build it now please!

Posted by: Snark17 at October 25, 2013 3:03 PM

This is the kind of place I would love to inhabit. Soon, please, and more like it.

Posted by: woolie at October 25, 2013 3:49 PM

I'm with zig.

Maybe it makes logical sense to build taller here. But it ain't gonna happen, not with the NIMBY's righting to preserve, uhhhh, the Walgreens and other crappy buildings there now. Mark my words, there will be opposition.

If they're smart, they're planning on building, say, eight stories, so they throw out a proposal for ten, reach out to the neighbors, make big donations to neighborhood groups, hold 'design charrettes', blah blah, pretend to give up two stories, and build the eight they were planning all along.

Posted by: SFRealist at October 25, 2013 5:07 PM

8 stories is fine.
This is the first of a few baby steps.

In 5 years, someone can develop the corner diagonally across the intersection, where there's currently a Well's Fargo, another business, and a parking lot. With the precedent set by this development, the second one can be 10-15 stories and 450+ units, which I think is appropriate for the location.

Posted by: OMN at October 25, 2013 5:33 PM

"The Mission can handle as tall of a building as can be constructed anywhere - there are better conditions than the financial district, actually."

Interesting. Good to know, thanks for the correction. I was basing my comment on other people who've told me as much.

Posted by: Schlub at October 25, 2013 6:24 PM

What about the school on Capp Street adjacent to the site on Capp Street? 10 stories will block their light & the garage on Capp will have a major impact.

Posted by: Mission Mom at October 25, 2013 8:54 PM

I thought this was a drawing of the original brutalist 10 story building designed for this location back in the 60s. I know this drawing is without color, but I would like to see a bit more detail.

Posted by: NoeValleyJim at October 25, 2013 9:34 PM

These look like old renderings to me.

10 stories is massive in this neighborhood, but reasonable. Hopefully they only cut it down to 8.

I think the adjacent parcels around BART stations are actually zoned for this extra height, if Im not mistaken...

Posted by: Rob at October 25, 2013 11:05 PM

Taller, yes, like yesterday.

Posted by: Joel V at October 26, 2013 12:03 AM

The garage entrance on Capp Street is going to be filled with filth. But on the other hand, I guess it could be the first step in cleaning up the street. The rendering itself looks a little ugly and I'm sure the residents will fight this "gentrification."

Posted by: sfresident at October 26, 2013 5:38 AM

One reason Mission Street was selected for BART, and the reason 16th and 24th Sts were selected for the stations was the development potential. There is no point in building heavy rail and surrounding the stations with 1-story buildings that are there now. At the time, there were serious plans to develop these sites, including bridging over the BART "holes in the ground." These plans were killed by the "Mission activists" who then, as now, don't want any change in the neighborhood, and then wonder why a studio in the Mission rents for $2500/month, and the BART plazas are crack central.

Posted by: Jim at October 26, 2013 3:55 PM

OMN, that's a good point. This is (hopefully) the first step. When (if?) this gets built, the next one on the other corner can be taller. Then we can hope to get reasonably tall buildings on the 24th St. station.

This should have happened 20 years ago, and if it happens it will take ten years too long, but maybe it will start now.

Posted by: SFRealist at October 27, 2013 9:30 AM

Really getting tired of the box and glass. Boring and very repetitive. Where is our planning commission?

Posted by: Grace at October 27, 2013 12:13 PM

Ok, Grace. You said it 3 times.

Since you and a lot of others keep complaining about "glass and boxes", what would you prefer?

Oh, I know. How about a high rise wooden Victorian?

Posted by: Futurist at October 27, 2013 12:44 PM

I would prefer to see something super modern and innovative. I know strange shaped buildings can add to the cost, but we can still have some fun with it without driving up the cost too much. Check out this great Dutch building: silodam.

Posted by: NoeValleyJim at October 27, 2013 6:07 PM

Taller, taller, taller.
And tapered.
But hopefully this will help clean up that consistently deplorable corner.

Posted by: james jr at October 28, 2013 9:04 AM

Not enough bay windows. How would someone even know this was in San Francisco? More bay windows please. Also, shorter. Maybe 2-3 stories instead. Also more parking, needs to be at least five parking spots per units. And shiny/reflecty to make sure that the children next door aren't tortured by shadows (think of the children!). Also, no market rate units, all below market rate. Also, no subsidized units, needs to be all market rate. Also, taller.

Posted by: anon at October 28, 2013 9:55 AM

NoeValleyJim. that is the ugliest building i've ever seen. thanks for the perspective. yes, architecture could indeed be worse than what we are seeing here.

Posted by: moto mayhem at October 28, 2013 11:06 AM

Heh, that building NVJ links looks like it was made from leftovers.

Posted by: Rillion at October 28, 2013 12:01 PM

Yea, see NVJ certainly is entitled to his opinion as what constitutes a "great" building, as he shows us.

But he doesn't really have the skills to talk about good, modern architecture:

Other than to hark back to wanting us to copy Dutch architecture, and of course, require us all to ride little bikes like the Dutch do.

And yea, that building is pretty ugly.

Posted by: Futurist at October 28, 2013 12:13 PM

NVJ said that you could do something fun without driving costs up. Check out the Silodam building: it is a basic rectilinear box and as cheap to construct as they come. But the architect used color, fenestration variation, and other minor changes in form to make something interesting.

Posted by: The Milkshake of Despair at October 28, 2013 1:33 PM

Anywhere 5-10 stories is fine, but way less parking. In compensation every tenant should get a free Fastpass. A better design might be to take over the "plaza" within the footprint.

Posted by: david vartanoff at October 28, 2013 5:10 PM

I emailed my BART supe, Tom Radulovich, to ask why this project was so short. Here's what he had to say:

"[..]BART staff are meeting this week with the developers to hear about their plans. BART has no land use authority, but we is working with them on an integrated approach to open space. The existing buildings don't do much for the neighborhood, and the right project would be a tremendous improvement.

Thanks to the Eastern Neighborhood rezoning five years ago, the site has no density limits or minimum parking requirements. As far as I know the developer is not asking for a height exception; I think a height increase would trigger more extensive CEQA review."

Posted by: Mark Ballew at October 28, 2013 7:02 PM

Since I don't have a design degree I will keep my comments to myself. In addition, I will smile and nod to anything that Futurist has to say because he seems to be our resident SS expert. Let us all bow.

Posted by: Mark at October 28, 2013 7:04 PM

San Franciscans love to impose their values upon others.

"Hey, you ride a bike, and you, lady, here's a Fastpass, no car for you. Stop eating meat. This should be a meatless building."

Posted by: Mike at October 28, 2013 8:59 PM

^Happy to hear that you're for getting rid of all zoning. At least I assume that's what you mean, since you don't want to impose your values upon others.

Posted by: anon at October 28, 2013 9:21 PM

I hadn't realized that this location had the financing available for a "great" building. Maybe you could share with us some of your ideas to buildings that would be similar to what could be built here at a reasonable cost.

The Guggenheim Balboa cost $89M (in 1997 dollars). The Getty cost $350M. I really doubt that we will have that kind of budget here. So you really need to scale your expectations to the likely budget of the developers and architects.

Posted by: NoeValleyJim at October 29, 2013 1:04 PM

The Getty cost $1b, and probably more.

Posted by: Futurist at October 29, 2013 3:17 PM

Yeah you are right, I was going off an old LA Times article. According to wikipedia, the Getty cost $1.3B.

Posted by: NoeValleyJim at October 29, 2013 5:03 PM

This ain't New York. Go back there all of you

Posted by: Alberto at November 27, 2013 12:01 AM

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