Planning Commission Approves New Interim Restrictions On Mission District Developments

by Jack Morse, SFist.
 

 

1979-Mission-Street-2015-Mission.jpg

Skidmore Owings & Merrill rendering via Socketsite

 

The San Francisco Planning Commission unanimously approved new interim controls on Mission District developments on Thursday. That means, for the next 15 months, any project over 25 units or 25,000 square feet that does not consist of at least one third affordable units, or any project that removes a rent-controlled unit, will be subject to increased scrutiny. Also among the new hurdles, new developments will be evaluated based on how they impact the neighborhood's character.

The new controls will apply to any project that had not been approved as of yesterday, and the Chronicle notes that comes out to 17 projects for a total of 1,300 units. Included in there is the controversial "Monster in the Mission" pictured above. The proposed site of that development is adjacent to the 16th and Mission Street BART Plaza.

“We want to protect the people who are there now, and interim controls can help that be done if they’re framed properly,” the paper quotes commissioner Michael Antonini as saying. “You can’t set rules saying who can live in a neighborhood and who can’t.”

According the the Chronicle, developers proposing buildings of 75 or more units will now have to offer up data on “how the proposed project would affect existing and future residents, businesses and community-serving providers in the area.”

Although approved unanimously by the commission, the measure certainly has opponents.

“This is not good government,” Rob Poole of the development advocacy group San Francisco Housing Action Coalition told Mission Local. “This doesn’t do anything to help make it easier to build affordable housing, it doesn’t improve the process.”

Tenants' rights lawyer J. Scott Weaver told the publication that this is only one part of a complicated solution, and that it is important to keep working at that solution.

“This is a test," reiterated Weaver. "This is the beginning of a process, we’re not claiming a solution. They are interim controls.”