The%20Lux%20Tag.jpg
As J. Branch Development continues to beat the bushes for financing to build “The Lux” at the corner of Church and 28th Streets (“Living Modern in Noe Valley”), it’s a plugged-in tipster that captures the growing restlessness of Noe neighbors (“Rebuild the Church”).
Noe’s “Blue Church” sat on the site until fifteen (15) months ago when the building was razed to make way for the six condo development which has stood undeveloped since.
Noe Blue Church (Image Source: MapJack.com)
UPDATE: From the developer:

We learned that a former member of the Church placed the graffiti, out of frustration, on the sign. We are currently seeking a protective order to hopefully prevent this from happening again.

The name “The Lux” for those of you who do not know, was one of the several names of the building when it operated as a movie theater back in the early 1900’s. As part of the approvals for the environmental review, it was strongly suggested that we use one of the old names and place a plaque in the lobby commemorating the building’s former use as a movie theater.

Cheers.

Comments from Plugged-In Readers

  1. Posted by A Neighbor

    Alas, I cannot take credit, but note that you may be misreading the tagger’s tone. Pretentious project names like “The Lux” inspire sarcasm.

  2. Posted by lol

    growing restlessness of Noe neighbors
    lol! I can already figure the mobs waving their shabby-chic pitchforks and bamboo torches on Church Street.

  3. Posted by Dan

    You have to give the builders of the Lux for trying to reproduce the architectural detail of the building it replaces.

  4. Posted by noearch

    Ignore the name of the new building. It really means nothing.
    What this project brings is some life and urban order to a previously derelict piece of run down property. This is appropriate urban infill housing to this area and I predict it will sell quickly. You are right on a major transit line and walkable to shops and restaurants all over Noe.
    Best of luck to the developers and builders.

  5. Posted by Longtime-Lurker

    Marginal looking piece of new construction with a cheesy name > Rodent infested, creepy, derilect sh*tbox that’s been an eyesore since the 1990s.
    Ranting against any and all new construction, regardless of what it’s replacing, is *very* 2000. Good luck to the builder.

  6. Posted by invented

    Hah, the irony is that Noe Valley fuels the whole uber – and luxe quest & lifestyle of the Bay Area, but doesn’t want to wear this fact on its sleeve. Change the name, build the development, (and NV we won’t tell anyone).
    While I don’t particularly like the name either — I just have to chuckle at the mirror it shines on the ‘hood.

  7. Posted by lol

    Projects in SOMA or Mission Bay often start with “Art” to make bland boxes sound artsy.
    In this NV project, The “Lux” name probably comes from luxating your wrist from writing too many zeroes on your check.

  8. Posted by DanRH

    someone tags a sign and it’s a representation of how the neighbors all feel? how was that leap made?

  9. Posted by The Milkshake of Despair

    “You are right on a major transit line…”
    Being on a transit line somewhat of a negative due to noise. This is one of the location fallacies. It is better to be near a transit stop than to be on a line. For example consider two locations, this place which is two short blocks to a J-Church stop versus say Sanchez and 29th which is about the same distance to a stop. While the latter isn’t on a transit line, it is just as convenient but without the squeeky, rumbly, clanky noise.
    And for Lux having no meaning, it actually does but not what most people think. Lux means light and it looks as if this design has generous windows which will gulp down the natural light.

  10. Posted by noearch

    @MOD…you’re splitting hairs and I disagree with you. the J is not squeaky, rumbly and clanky.
    trust me, these will sell well and quickly being on the J line.

  11. Posted by Kurt Brown

    Needs more double-wide stroller parking slots.

  12. Posted by tc_sf

    @noearch — It is worth noting that quite a few posters on this site seem to claim that housing on a “busy street” is expected to perform worse then other housing not situated in that way.
    While I have seen little evidence for this claim, were it to be true a purchaser would do poorly for themselves if they paid a “on a transit line” premium at acquisition and then sold at a “busy street” discount.

  13. Posted by Brahma (incensed renter)

    The Milkshake of Despair wrote:

    And for Lux having no meaning, it actually does but not what most people think. Lux means light and…

    You’re of course correct that Lux has the meaning you point out, but I think the development company intended, and most people infer, Luxe:

    luxe: noun—luxurious, sumptuous

    perhaps, like the Payne Mansion, the completed building will feature marble floors in the entryway as a signifier of luxury, in addition to the de rigueur granite counters and stainless steel appliances.

  14. Posted by The Milkshake of Despair

    Oh c’mon noearch, there’s a huge difference between the amount of sound transmitted across an unobstructed 30′ versus an obstructed 500′. It is at least an order of magnitude difference and hardly splitting hairs. Don’t make me get all scientific on you.
    And I never said that this project won’t sell well. Just dispelling the simplification that a location on a transit line provides the best access to transit. There are many addresses near this project which are off of the transit line and in quieter locations yet are more convenient to the J-Church.

  15. Posted by Used to live at Church & 26th

    The J itself may not be “squeaky, rumbly and clanky,” but the historic streetcars that run on the F line are, and they travel between Market Street and the Balboa Park trainyard via Church Street.

  16. Posted by wc

    I am a Noe neighbor (±5 blocks) and in no way do I want the church to be rebuilt. While the rendered building is boring to me, I’d really like to see this built sooner than later instead of looking at an empty lot. Also, I am glad to see the ground floor is commercial and hope that the space is designed well for a future business.

  17. Posted by PN

    You guys will argue about anything…
    Lux, in this case, is a direct reference to the original building serving as a theater called The Lux Theatre and later the De Lux Theatre (among other names). Whether meant to convey a sense of light or luxury is just a bonus round in the fights on SS.
    It’s really not that hard to find the info.

  18. Posted by MCM

    That’s a pretty ugly design and one that doesn’t have anything to do with the surrounding area. Doesn’t anyone in SF know how to make contemporary buildings that go with and complement rather than fight the local architecture?
    It seems that it’s boxy modern or nothing. Surely we should emulate the examples from other great cities who have good taste and think of buildings as part of the social structure, not merely profit centers, not simply development for the well to do who eat out rather than really live at home. Barcelona in particular, shares San Francisco -like geography and demographics yet plays with having the traditional alongside modern sensibilities.
    This should be one story shorter, a whole lot better looking and it should leave light for the neighbors who will, if this is built, be permanently in shadow.

  19. Posted by noearch

    ok, mod: whateverrrrrrrrrrrrrrr.
    you will note my statement simply said: “you are right on a major transit line…”
    I made no mention pro or con about noise. that may be an issue for some buyers, others it may not.
    my statement implied the “convenience” aspect.
    just to set the record straight.

  20. Posted by The Developer

    I found many of your comments well written with real value and interest, however some were just wrong.
    Let’s start with the graffiti. We learned that a former member of the Church placed the graffiti, out of frustration, on the sign. We are currently seeking a protective order to hopefully prevent this from happening again.
    The name “The Lux” for those of you who do not know, was one of the several names of the building when it operated as a movie theater back in the early 1900’s. As part of the approvals for the environmental review, it was strongly suggested that we use one of the old names and place a plaque in the lobby commemorating the building’s former use as a movie theater.

  21. Posted by Joe

    Dear Developer:
    San Franciscans – especially those that live in Noe Valley are never happy – period. There is always something that came before that was better than that which will be built in the future.
    Its terribly easy to spray-paint ones politics on a sign and call it meaningful protest – and thankfully thats typically the best that NIMBY’s come up with.
    Good luck with this development!

  22. Posted by A.T.

    Developer, on the name, I suggest you consider – instead of “Lux” – Rita, or Isis, or even Searchlight. “Lux” will be forever mocked.

  23. Posted by EH

    Rebuild the church? Rebuild the movie theater. The graffiti artist is a n00b.

  24. Posted by noearch

    I think the Developer is doing an excellent job, and I look forward to seeing this project completed.
    As for the design, there will always be malcontents with anything built in Noe V. I think the design is appropriate, with a varied and articulated facade using a variety of window shapes and projections. I like the multi-colored approach too; breaks down the mass and scale. The height is appropriate and in scale with other adjacent buildings, and it is within the height limit.
    I like the name Lux, as it ties into some historical aspect of the site and original movie theater.
    As for shadow complaints: every building at certain times of the day casts SOME shadow on another building or location. guess what? the sunshine moves as the day moves. This isn’t rocket science. It’s reality.

  25. Posted by Diane Goodman

    Looks more like some of the newer construction in SOMA rather than Noe Valley.

  26. Posted by noearch

    What should “new construction” look like for Noe Valley.
    Seriously, I’m interested.

  27. Posted by A.T.

    I’m with noearch on this one. Noe Valley is pretty bland and milquetoast overall and this place fits in just fine. There are a few really great new houses in the area and some big ol’ great victorians, but like most of Noe, this place seems “nice” as my 72-year-old mother would say.

  28. Posted by [anon.ed]

    While I have seen little evidence for this claim, were it to be true a purchaser would do poorly for themselves if they paid a “on a transit line” premium at acquisition and then sold at a “busy street” discount.
    You incorrectly equivilate differing property inventory across drastically different price thresholds when you make that statement. A near mansion on a thoroughfare in a tony neighborhood is one thing. A condo development that touts its transit friendly location is another.

  29. Posted by noearch

    “equivalate”? ah…is that a real word, or do you write for S. Palin?
    it’s actually kind of a cool mashup.

  30. Posted by [anon.ed]

    ha. whoops. “Equate” is what I meant to say.

  31. Posted by tc_sf

    Hmmm, but when I search SS for “busy street condo” the first hit is someone pointing out a condo not being on a busy street.
    And the second,
    “this is one condo, on a busy street. i offered another condo, in a better location. both anecdotal. yet you latch onto this one as proof. oh kaaaaaaaaaaaaay
    Posted by: fluj at September 25, 2007 2:24 PM

    http://socketsite.com/archives/2007/09/damn_those_direct_comps_in_the_marina_1307_bay_street.html
    Referring to a 2/2 1028/1400 (public/MLS) sqft condo.
    Hard to call that a near mansion.

  32. Posted by noearch

    no, it’s cool. equivalate is a word. means to compare. makes sense. I would agree with you.
    I still feel being on Church st. with the J stop very very close will be an attraction for some buyers.
    After all, we all experience some noise in this dense city. It’s pretty normal.

  33. Posted by [anon.ed]

    The last time “busy street” came up, it was the Gough street house. Do you really wish to argue quiet street versus busy street for similar property?

  34. Posted by tc_sf

    Sorting by date I see quite a number of recent hits for “busy street” (Although the date sorting seems to be imperfect)
    http://socketsite.com/socketsite-search.html?cx=015144282720640891649%3Atulbha7kntc&cof=FORID%3A11&q=%22busy+street%22&sa=Search&siteurl=www.socketsite.com%2F&sort=date
    Certainly different locations will have different values even for a similar property. My issue is that for many properties featured here there is evidence that the property was in the same location at the time of its prior sale.

  35. Posted by [anon.ed]

    So your hypothetical question is, where does transit friendly end and busy street begin? Probably somewhere in a hypothetical ill advised overbid.

  36. Posted by tc_sf

    Not a question, just pointing out that the ability to “detect” a busy street or “overbid” in hindsight is not terribly useful.

  37. Posted by A.T.

    The 20-20 hindsight is in the “ill advised” overbid comment. During the bubble, the mantra was “over asking” and if you wanted to buy a place, you had to “overbid” and that’s what buyers were “advised” to do. Sure, it’s now obvious to all that “overbid” (or, heck, “buy at 2007 prices”) = “pay too much” but that was not at all true with respect to the advising that was going on then.
    Busy street may be good or it may be bad or it may be a non-issue, depending on what you are looking for and the construction of the home. But tc_sf has it right that it is the rare (non-existent) place in SF that is on a busy street now but wasn’t the last time it sold.

  38. Posted by [anon.ed]

    Yeah, everybody was overbidding. Not everbody was doing it in a way that exceeded what the neighborhood had ever done or would go on to do. And of those folks, not all of them decided to sell within four or five years, unimproved. Yet what shows up on SS? hey. you’re entertained. we all get it.

  39. Posted by noearch

    Interesting thread. amazed that my original comment about being on a transit line would generate so much pro/con discussion.
    I still think this is a good location, esp for many young first time buyers, or seniors who rely on the J church to get downtown or other places.

  40. Posted by Lokee1

    Churches don’t get built in San Francisco unless they are “liberation ” “churches”. I’ll take the boring box anytime.
    However, why can’t people plant more trees in Noe? The place still looks like the old working class neighborhood – now with multi-million dollar prices – do some planting folks

  41. Posted by The Milkshake of Despair

    Oh I also think it is a good location though I’d hope that seniors or anyone else relying on transit don’t think that living right on the line equates with good transit access. Distance to the station is the important factor when considering transit convenience, you cannot just wave a trolley down mid-block. Proximity is so important that real estate listings in transit heavy locations like urban Japan emphasize how close the property is to the nearest rail station.
    But there’s more to this project than just transit. It seems like an OK development and I think that “OK” is just fine, no need to deliver envelope pushing architecture with every building. It will enhance the neighborhood with its ground level retail and bring a few more residents to the block. I hope the developer can secure financing to get this off the ground soon.

  42. Posted by noearch

    oh, please MOD;
    there is no “station” on church st. there are stops. the nearest stop to this location is about 2 blocks away. pretty damn close i think.
    I’m so glad you’re coming around to liking this location, despite the “noisy” streetcar.
    🙂

  43. Posted by sfrenegade

    “not all of them decided to sell within four or five years, unimproved.”
    But the ones that did gave us some apples, for which we thank them greatly.
    Anyway, hope the NIMBYs aren’t able to hold anything up here. This city desperately needs more housing.

  44. Posted by EH

    Don’t get me wrong (and I’m sure you didn’t), but if they’re not going to rebuild the theater then this is just fine by me. I’m curious what would go in the retail…

  45. Posted by The Milkshake of Despair

    Station or stop ? Now that is splitting hairs.
    I don’t know why you you think I’m “coming around” as this location always seemed good to me. My point was that being right on a major transit line isn’t necessarily a as good as it sounds.
    Though it seems intuitive that this site is better because it is right on the J-Church, there are more addresses in this neighborhood off of Church that are shorter walk to the J-Church. And quieter to boot.
    My only argument is that “being on a major transit line” sets this site apart from the immediate neighborhood. It does, but not in a good way.

  46. Posted by invented

    However, why can’t people plant more trees in Noe? The place still looks like the old working class neighborhood – now with multi-million dollar prices – do some planting folks
    Lokee — the City isn’t greening the side streets other than its corridor projects as far as I know. Many owners just don’t plant. Join FUF and come out and plant with us ‘hood by ‘hood. Thousands of trees being planted and managed — help us green the city. FUF needs the support – and help — there’s a massive greening action underway.

  47. Posted by NoeValleyJim

    Lots of trees on my block invented, not everywhere though.
    The Luxe is now in the market, the cheapest unit is 962 sq ft 2/2 priced at $889k, the largest unit is a 2114 sq ft 3/2 priced at $1,549k.
    Open houses start today but I don’t think I can make it, hopefully another Socketsite reader can report back. It looks nice from the outside.
    http://www.theluxesf.com/index.html

  48. Posted by NoeValleyJim

    Four of six sold, including all three of the larger 3 bedroom ones.

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