In addition to a new 45,600-square-foot Whole Foods on its second floor, the refined plans for the redevelopment of Macy’s former Stonestown Galleria location now include a 72,000-square foot “sports retail store”; ten (10) small to medium size retail spaces; and up to four new restaurants and a 12-screen theater on its third level.

And if the aforementioned plans are approved next week, General Growth Properties is planning to break ground next month with a grand reopening anticipated in July of 2020.

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Comments from “Plugged-In” Readers

  1. Posted by Aaron Goodman

    Housing, Transit, lacking planning for this part of the mall and the parking zones. We need the planning department and SFBOS to enforce the need for better transportation options here and public plaza and housing on the parking zones. This development by GGP ignores the need to upgrade more around the site. The lacking vision for this area, means more traffic, lacking solutions for needed changes that are failing to materialize before major construction at Stonestown, SFSU-CSU and Parkmerced. Be prepared for more traffic nightmares.

    What about the L-Taraval back up sloat and south on Lake Merced BLVD or cut it at 20th into a T that turns south into Stonestown and redevelops the YMCA, the YMCA Annex, and Petco, and develops a platform station on the west side of 19th with a new urban plaza ABOVE a garage? IDEAS ARE NEEDED!

    • Posted by Anonymous

      Pretty serious overreaction to a plan to simply remodel a building within its existing footprint and that doesn’t in any way, shape, or form preclude any potential future surrounding development.

      • Posted by Mark

        The comment was a bit over the top, but ideas are definitely needed. While redevelopment within the existing footprint has been spelled out in the draft proposal, the entire Stonestown complex really should be brought into the 21st century as it relates to changes in bricks/mortar retailing and mixed-use/transit-oriented development. Otherwise, you’re stuck with a 1960s era suburban shopping mall surrounded by vast amounts of parking.

        • Posted by Hunter

          Agree 100%. But as you can see from the comments here, West Siders love their car-centric planning and keeping housing prices sky high!

      • Posted by Tony

        Actually, it’s a pretty entertaining display of how a lot of people in this city would never approve of this city even being built in the first place.

    • Posted by Mark

      If the M ever goes under 19th Avenue (or, God willing, a BART extension) there will be a station at Stonestown. I ride the L. It’s slow as hell stopping every two blocks.

      • Posted by Mark F.

        There will be no Bart extension or subway. There is no money now for the proposed $4 billion dollar Caltrain extension.

  2. Posted by Hunter

    The whole parking lot should be HOUSING. Planning needs to get their butts in check by Mayor Breed who has a real mandate to build up, especially on the wasted West Side.

    • Posted by Katdip

      Ridiculousm. Stonestown is what it is – a fairly popular mall that attracts customers in both cars and on transit. Though it’s served by several major transit lines (29, L, M), you still will need parking.. I shop at the TJs weekly, and will include the WF when it’s done. Weekly grocery shopping for a family doesn’t work so well on tansit, so some parking is needed. If we want housing the city should work with the under utilized movie theater in the back – lots of room back there.

      • Posted by Hunter

        Have you ever heard of this new thing called a PARKING GARAGE? Surface lots are history, especially in a place with some of the most expensive land in the country in the middle of a major housing crisis. You can have parking below housing, as much of the new construction in SoMa, Mission Bay, etc. has.

        • Posted by Katdip

          Calm down! I wasn’t suggesting expanding parking there. Stonestown actually has a relatively small surface parking lot along 19th, plus two existing garages (behind Nordstrom and underground). Maybe you could fit another garage out back but it wouldn’t free up that much space for housing. As to my privilege, I was just pointing out that regular people use cars for certain tasks that are expanding at Stonestown. Regular retail like Macys is better suited for transit than grocery stores.

          How should the city make more housing out there? Eminent domain, zoning changes? I bet it would take some major incentives to get the mall owners to deal with all the headaches to put housing there.

          • Posted by Hunter

            Zoning is the major obstacle. That, and the fact that we give neighbors more power to say “no” to any new construction, is why we are in this crisis. I’m not gonna “calm down” until housing-secure folks like yourself truly get why we are in the huge freaking hole regarding housing & homelessness.

          • Posted by 4th Generation SF

            There is no “crisis”. If you can’t afford to live in SF, move elsewhere.

          • Posted by sunsetter

            Actually, there is ~14 acres of surface parking immediately surrounding Stonestown (not even including the surface lots around the United Artists theater). In my experience, the parking in front of the mall is usually crowded, while the parking in the rear is usually not. I’d bet you could build a second parking garage of similar size to the existing one, and then free up ~13 acres for hundreds/thousands of housing units.

        • Posted by 4th Generation SF

          Parking garages are terrible for women and families. Dangerous places. And with crimes going UP in SF, not down, parking garages are not a good idea.

          • Posted by kthxbai

            [clears throat] There is no “danger”. If you can’t keep yourself safe in a parking garage, drive elsewhere.

      • Posted by Hunter

        Also, let me address your totally car-centric, me-me-me position that: “Weekly grocery shopping for a family doesn’t work so well on transit.” Car-access is an expensive *privilege* — not a right — and many folks (in SF and the wider world) shop for their entire families without one.

        • Posted by Sigh

          Every single family I know in SF has a car.

          If you want to get kids and groceries on a bus at night, be my guess, but stop forcing a lifestyle on others. You people are just as arrogant as NYMBYS

          • Posted by Hunter

            There’s no such thing as “forcing a lifestyle on others.” The city, however, has downzoned 3/4 of san francisco since the 1970s to limit apartment construction. We’re well past time to remove that barrier.

        • Posted by 4th Generation SF

          What is not a right is living in SF if you can’t afford it.

          • Posted by S

            without Prop 13 a lot of “4th generation” San Franciscans might not be able to afford it here either. Imagine having to pay property tax on what your property is actually worth.

            I guess they should pack up and leave!

        • Posted by S

          Grocery stores are better for driving if you go 1x per week. However, if you have real density, there can be more stores within walking distance so you can go and pick up what you need on a more regular basis.

          It’s amazing to me how people cannot see outside their own way of life.

      • Posted by A former planner

        Zoning is not the obstacle here. C-2 zoning is outdated, but alllows housing and a PUD would allow increased density. Add State density bonus or HomeSF, use the entire property to calculate the density for housing on one portion of the site and you’ve got plenty of density. There was a proposal to put housing on the back lot , I think where the farmers market is located. Abandoned due to opposition. Perhaps with the new emphasis on housing it should be revisited.

    • Posted by 4th Generation SF

      And where would the people in housing park in that lot? There’s no room for “housing” there.

  3. Posted by Conifer

    Stonestown actually needs more parking as it is. Driving around is already common. Public transportation will not solve the need for parking here in the remote southwest.
    Among the genre of malls, Stonestown is not bad.

  4. Posted by sfdragonboy

    Retail, as we know it, is dead.

    Signed,

    Jeff “God” Bezos

    • Posted by sf

      Wrong, I just spent $10 at my local bike shop getting an inner tube

      • Posted by sfdragonboy

        Wow, a whole 10 bucks eh? Next GDP report should be off the charts then….

      • Posted by Brian M

        You can buy a supply of tubes on line for $6.00 at Bike Tires Direct. Heck, even by brick-and-mortar standards that is one expensive tube!

    • Posted by 4th Generation SF

      IDK, Jeff is obviously moving a gigantic Whole Foods in there. And he’s allegedly looking at bringing back a Toys R Us type of store.

  5. Posted by Amewsed

    Cool. Milk, eggs, bread at TJ, and then WF for prepared food. Amazon has not fully integrated the seamless shopping experience with WF currently so there is time to improve. There is huge potential for Amazon to capture more value in their platforms so this WF could be the cutting edge store.

    Look forward to seeing this project in 2020. Target and TJ should step it up in the meantime. What is going to happen to the Nordstrom space when it closes?

  6. Posted by sf

    The entire parcel of Stonestown is approx. 50 city blocks based on observation. Tear it all down and build 50,000 housing units above retail.

  7. Posted by Rob Silver

    All this talk about adding housing to Stonestown’s lots is stupid. People that live on the west side of SF don’t want more density. Moreover GGP is a mall/retail company and will never build residential housing on one of their most successful mall properties. Nevertheless having the 12 screen theater is a big blunder. Less than a mile away is the 20 screen century theater megaplex. A Barnes and noble book store would be nice but SFSU students would probably ruin that like they did to boarders books.

    • Posted by Hunter

      “People that live on the west side of SF don’t want more density.” Wrong. I think you meant “A very vocal group of housing-secure folks on the west side” don’t want density.

      • Posted by Zig

        I think many do not whether they are politically active or not. My uncle lives in Ingleside Terrace and I am pretty sure he has not been in Muni since 1982

      • Posted by 4th Generation SF

        3 people in the article is not “wrong” LOL. The westside is not for density. Deal.

    • Posted by Anonymous

      Why should anyone care what some boomer NIMBYs want?

    • Posted by Jk

      Barnes and Nobles? Who still go to book stores or read paper books? Do you wanna bring back Blockbuster and Tower Records too?

    • Posted by grrr

      New theater complex at Stonestown (and the proposed one at Serramonte) will kill the Century Daly City — AND THAT’S A GOOD THING. It’s in a weird location and is already dated. Should have been built closer to Westlake or Serramonte. Would better to have office and/or residential towers there.

    • Posted by Dr. House

      > SFSU students would probably ruin that like they did to [Borders]

      What? How did students ruin Borders? You don’t think they bought books there? I shopped there all the time when I attended State.

      I think the economics of paying San Francisco-scale rents on giant spaces like that one while competing with Amazon in a very tough category has made the big box bookstore pretty untenable in SF, hence the zero stores of that model that have survived in SF. I don’t think that’s one group’s fault.

  8. Posted by Rob Silver

    Reasonable infill is one thing, but overhauling the neighborhood into a congested nightmare is another.

    Stonestown is the nucleus of the west side much as union square is in downtown. The best solution is to stop holding back developers with frivolous height/shadow restrictions and build hundreds of thousands of units downtown which already has the environment and infrastructure to support more people.

    SOMA is a wasteland, why not build 80 story condo towers there? Looking to the west side to support an endless demand for housing is nonsensical.

    • Posted by Anonymous

      What’s nonsensical is thinking that building 5 story apartment buildings on the west side isn’t reasonable. What’s ridiculous is thinking that neglecting to improve transit on the west side to support increased population isn’t reasonable.

      The west side is a low-rise, sprawling hell compared to SOMA.

      I suggest you base your world view on, you know… reality.

    • Posted by Hunter

      SoMa needs tons more infill. That doesn’t mean huge parking lots or one-story retail on the West Side cannot *also* put housing on top. Suburbia has no place in one of our largest cities; there’s plenty of that on the rest of the peninsula.

    • Posted by Hunter

      Also the west side is *already* a “congested nightmare” !! Adding more housing near train lines (and improving transit / bike options with the $$ that comes from development) could actually reduce car-trips. But yeah, that would require you to consider reality.

      • Posted by 4th Generation SF

        I seriously doubt you live on the westside, work on the westside or even visit the westside very often. It’s not gonna happen.

  9. Posted by Katdip

    Hunter – you know jack about me and my housing security, and I’ve worked to promote affordable housing in this city for more than 20 years. the westside is due for a density upgrade, but it helps nothing to say it is a “hell” and that we should tear down swaths of it and build high rises. Your “hair on fire” response doesn’t solve the inherent difficulties of significantly upzoning Stonestown or other desirable parcels, like pivate landownership, existing infrastructure (or lack thereof), etc. And NIMBY opposition is just as real a barrier as geology and financing, so you better come up with more creative ideas to deal with it than just insulting people.

    • Posted by Anonymous

      5 stories is not a high rise. Jesus H. Christ.

    • Posted by Hunter

      I think you’re confusing me with someone else using the word “hell”—I used your own phrase “congested nightmare.” But somehow you think *that* bit of hyperbole wasn’t blowing things out of proportion, eh?

      Tell me more about how you promote affordable housing, while arguing against building housing on a PARKING LOT. A parking lot. FWIW, the NIMBYs are increasingly outnumbered by all kinds of folks who are mad as hell about the homelessness and housing prices, and have increasingly few choices for where to live in this town. So no, I don’t have to convince folks like you that we must build more homes in SF. It’s going to happen with or without you.

      • Posted by Hunter

        *Edit: Rob Silver’s phrase—no idea if you & Katnip are the same person.

      • Posted by Brian M

        While I agree with 100% of your arguments here, I am not convinced that more million dollar condos at a mall is going to “solve homelessness”. Homelessness has deeper mental health, medical, social, family structure, and economic structure causes that unlimited market rate housing (or even “affordable” units built at $500,000 per unit in real costs) will not solve.

        Let’s not oversell things. They could build the 50,000 units one commenter proposed and that would still not address “homelessness” per se.

        • Posted by Hunter

          Development alone will certainly not fix it; totally agree. But giving many more low-income people places to live (much of which is funded via inclusionary development dollars) while also growing our tax base to offer better mental health services, drug treatment, job training, etc. for the chronically homeless is the goal.

      • Posted by S

        AMEN

    • Posted by Orland

      Actually, tearing down all the Outer Sunset blocks west of Sunset Blvd and building mid- to lower highrise residential with preserved view corridors and upgraded transit would add a wonderful new neighborhood to SF and be a vast improvement.

      • Posted by Sunsetter

        Does it make me a NIMBY to say I would prefer that my home not be torn down?

        • Posted by Orland

          I can’t believe I am now being censored on my opinion of our urban landscape. The Outer Sunset is ugly and boring and should be subject to the kind of “urban renewal” that was done to the Western Addition.

          • Posted by 4th Generation SF

            That’s pretty disgusting, seriously.

          • Posted by Dave

            Join the club. I agree about the Outer Sunset. Have thought it would be a cool project at an architecture school to re-image the Outer Sunset. Replacing the row homes with 10, 15, 20 story slim towers (one at most per block) on the blocks near the Ocean and devoting some of the block to townhomes while leaving 40% of it open space is a nice vision for the area. Underground parking with retracted street parking. You could easily double the neighborhood density while opening up the neighborhood at the same time. Think of the potential for shrubs. Sadly, it is not going to happen.

          • Posted by Mark

            Face it, most of SF is ugly…concrete and half dead non-native trees. Unless you have sweeping, postcard views of any of the parks, ocean, bridges, bay it’s rather ugly.

            With your logic, why stop at tearing down just the outer sunset? Level the entire city west of Twin Peaks. Ridiculous. Most folks who live in the outer sunset prefer their single family homes. Was this the ideal development back in the 30s/40s? Probably not, but back then people wanted a suburban lifestyle. The city obliged.

          • Posted by Orland

            I don’t think the sorry state of the Outer Sunset is so much a function of planning (the city’s obliging) as a developer’s (Doelger) “vision” and money-making scheme though there seems to have been a market for his product .

          • Posted by Mark

            No, it was an intentional suburbanization of this particular part of the west side of SF. Each SFH home equipped with a private garage. Streetcars available for those heading to downtown jobs. I stand atop the reservoir with a full view of everything that was wrong with developing this part of the city. Bulldozing it isn’t the solution. Comparing it to the “urban renewal” of the Western Addition is a crime. The Fillmore area was thriving and the city deemed it “blight” to okay the destruction of 100 square blocks. Neighborhoods were destroyed to create an expressway that has become an eyesore and barrier. It’s sad to think that people view this attempt at urban renewal as something positive. Geary Blvd is definitely an ugly and depressing area of town.

          • Posted by Dave

            The suburbanization offered by the Sunset in the day did not work all that well. There was a large migration of families out of SF to the Peninsula and SJ – the real suburbs at the time. Calling the Sunset suburban is silly IMO. There was one garage per home and that was perfect. Many families had no car and most had one car. It worked in the day. it does not today when many families/occupants have 2 – 3 cars. And do not use the garage.

            No effort was made in the Sunset by Doelger. It was squeeze as many in as you can and the city PTB encouraged it. Profit was the bottom line. The same thing is happening today. SF has not learned anything from the Sunset and is effectively Sunsetifying the SOMA with boring housing blocks. Decades from now people will look back and ask what were they thinking. As we do today re: the Sunset.

    • Posted by S

      They are already working on rerouting the M through here. If they could get it to Daly City BART, people in Stonestown would have a quick way downtown, going in a direction that has plenty of capacity. Just because something is hard to do doesn’t mean that it can’t or shouldn’t be done.

      There is a real problem that younger generations are facing that older people just don’t seem to understand. We have crushing student debt and unaffordable housing. Those of us with decent pay don’t qualify for the limited affordable units that are available. We pay a large share of income to housing. Imagine what will happen to our society and economy if people like this cannot settle anywhere or have children. That is fewer customers to support our economy.

      Furthermore, our middle classes were built upon cheap homes (just like those on the westside) and providing access to equity. If those are no longer an option, we are literally shutting out people from class mobility. The “move-elsewhere” argument is moot because opportunity does not exist everywhere. People come to cities for job opportunities and all cities are getting more expensive in relation to average pay.

  10. Posted by Amewsed

    Talk about arguing over nothing. There are no plans for housing at this site. The nearest housing development is at ParkMerced, a few blocks over. That project will be phased in over the course of decades.

  11. Posted by pal

    kewl – some action on the west side 4 us

  12. Posted by Johnny G

    I heard a rumor that the UA theater will be an In-N-Out??!!

  13. Posted by Sculpey

    What the hell, the parking lots fronting 19th would be an astonishingly good place for apartment buildings. Workers taking the M to their jobs, supporting west portal businesses, going to school at SF State, buying dinner at WF and TJs…few driving cars. Expand the garages. It’s not a garden spot of the sunset.

    • Posted by Mark

      Few driving cars while expanding garages? Hmmn…

      The entire Stonestown compound should be reconfigured to include housing, commercial/retail and conference space for nearby SFSU in a way that compliments the area and supports transit upgrades and usage.

  14. Posted by Rob Silver

    All this talk about bulldozing the whole of west SF made me think for a moment I was living in communist Russia. I’m not worried though. 100+ years from now the west side of SF will not have changed much if at all. So continue fanticising about the rows of Stalinist apartment blocks in the Sunset… It’s not gonna happen.

  15. Posted by sparky-b

    The owner of this does not want to alter the shape at all, so that as the article states; they are looking to get approvals next week and start work next month. Anything everyone is talking about would say “they hope to get approvals in 4 years and start work in 5 years pending EIR and inclusionary housing requirements”

  16. Posted by Notcom

    Plugged in readers, who seem never to be caught by surprise (I’m told) might have been surprised to learn that Nordstrom is also reportedly closing their store here. Or maybe they’re just curious why no mention was made of it, since the tip hit the interweb a full month before this thread was updated. Maybe just waiting until an official announcement is made? (Or maybe just reluctant to give Stonestown-haters even more fodder)

    • Posted by sparky-b

      My wife told me it was closing a few months back based on the quality of the help in the shoe department, but I didn’t get corroboration by an outside source so I didn’t want to post about it. I think I can speak for all plugged in Socketsiters and say we knew.

      • Posted by Notcom

        I was thinking – selflessly, of course – there might be a few who didn’t have the intelligence afforded by a 7EEE pump…but perhaps you’re right. And props to Mrs. “-b”.

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