In a move which shouldn’t catch any plugged-in readers by surprise, City College of San Francisco has formally submitted plans for a tower to rise upon their 46,000-square-foot Hub District parcel at 33 Gough Street.

As envisioned by David Baker Architects, the 23-story tower would rise to a height of 250 feet, with 433 residential units over 5,600 square feet of ground floor retail space, a garage for 234 cars and 184 bikes, and a public mews wrapping around the development, connecting McCoppin and Gough.

And while the City College site is currently only zoned for Public use and development up to 85 feet in height, the parcel is proposed to be rezoned per the City’s Hub District Plan.

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Comments from “Plugged-In” Readers

  1. Posted by Orland

    Would this not be DBA’s first highrise?

    • Posted by Charles Scheid

      Any use other than the current will be a win for everyone. The building there now is unsafe and really a great example of how not to design a building for use by humans.

      Another example of “WTF were they thinking when they designed the space” is the City owned 1600 Mission Complex.

      It is somewhat appropriate that the SF City Building Department is based in a building that makes you ask “Who F*cking Approved This?”

      • Posted by scott f

        Yes, 1650 Mission, where Planning and some other city departments are based, is one of the worst-planned blocks in the city. The good news is those city departments are all planned to move to the new office building on the Coca-Cola Bottling Plant site one block northeast when it’s done, at which point the building can be redeveloped. If they insist the developer put a pedestrian right-of-way from the McCoppin/Gough/Otis intersection through to Mission, and add a signalized crosswalk at that spot on Mission, it would transform that block in a big way.

        However, the current Hub plan is considering leaving the 1650 Mission site with only an 85′ height limit. (You can see proposed heights here) It probably isn’t economical to tear down a 5 story office building and put up a mere 8 story apartment building, so I suspect that what happens in that case is the city building stays up and becomes tech offices, meaning no pedestrian connection will be built.

        For that reason, and because more housing is good in general, I asked them to raise the height limit on that block.

  2. Posted by unlivable city

    Ironically I was hanging out with friends at an amazing compound on Natoma this week. They are in town for Pride. The place is ironically very Asian themed — gardens and koi ponds and magic. Its all low rise around there. Seeped in the history of the city and especially its bohemian history, without which none of our current success would exist at all (look at San Jose — the tech capital nobody wants to live in).

    The compound was blissfully peaceful, and I looked up and realized that this entire urban ecosystem, this whole wonderful neighborhood – unique on our planet, easily a UNESCO heritage candidate — with so much history and the fingerprints of so many special people, is about to be ruined with the same amount of greed and the same utter lack of interest in history or the value of things other than churning out a quick buck as one would see in the hot mess of some random Chinese insta-city.

    It’s just wild what is being done to this city with seemingly no pushback.

    • Posted by scott f

      Where can I go see these gardens and koi ponds? I had no idea SoMa had publicly-open spaces like that.

    • Posted by Friscan

      Are you saying that building a 23-story housing project on what was largely surface parking on Otis at McCoppin will ruin the ecosystem of Natoma? And that building housing here defies the history or values of San Francisco? Did your friends challenge your idea that bohemians don’t need housing? Or have you let too much “history” seep into your brain?

    • Posted by BTinSF

      “easily a UNESCO heritage candidate”

      This is parody, right?

      • Posted by JWS

        I’ve long suspected as much, but that line sort of tipped his hand.

  3. Posted by BobN

    How can a mews wrap around something?

  4. Posted by Dave

    @unlivablecity- the dig at San Jose is somewhat typical of San Franciscans. SF is special in many ways, but it’s not as special as some residents think and places such as San Jose are not as “not special” as San Franciscans too often take comfort in assuming. Funny that no one wants to live in San Jose but it has a larger population than SF and has added more people than SF in recent years.

    A quibble but San Jose is not the tech capital. Mountain View, Palo Alto and other places just north of San Jose are, more appropriately, so identified.

    • Posted by ess

      San Jose calls itself the Capital of Silicon Valley.

      And there is much to dig at SJ. The entire city has a black cloud of inertia hanging over it.

      • Posted by Dave

        San Francisco calls itself “the city that knows how”.

        And there is a lot to criticize about San Francisco. The whole city has become somewhat of a parody of itself.

        Guess this is why there is a net out-migration from both cities based on 2014/2015 US Census data.

    • Posted by cfb

      The main reason that San Jose has a larger population than SF is because it was able to annex neighboring towns. SF has never been able to expand its city limits like that, but if you were to expand it to match the land area of SJ, there would be considerably more people living within them. SF is far denser than SJ, and the SF MSA and urban area have a lot more people than SJ’s.

      • Posted by will c pease

        SF county used to include all of what is now San Mateo County.

        • Posted by cfb

          Yeah i know, back in the 1850s. Future SF kind of got screwed by the state chopping 90% of its land area away. I guess no one expected the population to grow so much over the next 160 years.

    • Posted by JWS

      Pakistan has more people living in it than France. I guess more people would rather live in Pakistan.

    • Posted by Zig

      Last time I checked San Jose was of the few large American cities with a negative daytime population which is characteristic of a suburb

  5. Posted by folderpete

    Is there any interest in providing a shade-map for these hi-rises. I’d like to see them include: AM and PM, Dec. & June, max and min.

    Washington DC and Paris don’t have this worry. But, increasingly, we do.

  6. Posted by sassySFboy

    Very sad underuse of height with The Hub extended areas considering abundant transportation nearby. Many more 300ft to 700ft high rises needed here. Hopefully the city will raise height limits.

    • Posted by cfb

      250′ seems like an ok size to me, especially on the edge of downtown. But we could use a dozen more of them throughout the hub/western SOMA, and a dozen more in mission bay, and some along van ness ave and geary as well. And yeah some 300′-700′ towers would be nice too.

      [Editor’s Note: San Francisco’s Hub Heights 2.0 and Potential 600-Foot Tower]

  7. Posted by Sassy

    The massing is great: low-rise that respects street walls with tower toward mid-block. Way better than the current parking lots on the street sides. I’m looking forward to the Travel Lodge replacement that looks imminent…

  8. Posted by Monty

    Too short. Moderately wasted opportunity should be 35-40 stories minimum given quality of location.

  9. Posted by goodmaab50

    go up all you want, but require a % of money set aside for mass-transit re-workings in the area..

    SFMTA has too many projects along with BART that will need tax $ for fixing what has not been adequately fixed for the “tech-hub” area…

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