Building permits for the redesigned 400-foot residential tower to rise at 399 Fremont Street have been approved and issued, redesigned to hit the market as smaller rental units rather than condos.
As we first reported last year, the 42-story Rincon Hill tower and podium to rise on the corner of Fremont and Harrison will yield 452 residential units with 238 parking spaces for autos (including 36 tandem spaces served by valet) and 150 spaces for bikes under the podium.
399 Fremont Rendering: Aerial
Atop the podium there’s a pool and clubroom. And atop the tower, trees and a roof-top lounge:

399 Fremont Rendering: Roof
399 Fremont: Interim Plans Set To Bloom For The Californian Site [SocketSite]
399 Fremont Scoop: Redesigned And Pursuing Construction Permits [SocketSite]

22 thoughts on “Another 400-Foot Rincon Hill Tower Is Ready To Break Ground”
  1. Tis is much taller than 400′, based on rendering. ORH2 is 541′, and this tower doesn’t appear that much shorter. I’m guessing 400′ to the roof, and 75′ or so for the crown?

  2. Is this going where the Sailor’s Union currently stands, or on the dirt lot next to 388 Beale?

  3. Wouldn’t the tower have to (visibly) stand on top of the lower building for it to be a “podium”? This looks like a separate (attached) building, not a podium. Maybe my understanding of architecture lingo is outdated.

  4. Of all the new projects in Rincon Hill, this one is easily the one I’m most excited for. Was hoping it would break ground this cycle! Come so far since the first rendering.

  5. Also I’m a bit confounded by the shadows in the 3rd rendering. At what time of day/year does the sun shine from the Northeast at such a high angle?

  6. @sf:
    I can 100% guarantee you that the height of ORH2 is nowhere near 541′. It is just under 500′. The height limit is 450′ and the zoning code allows at most 10% additional for enclosing mechanical equipment and such on top of the building. That makes for a maximum height of 495′. The same rules apply to 399 Fremont, where the height limit is 400′, making the allowable height to the top 440′.

  7. @FDOTN: can’t be morning because there’s no traffic on the Bay Bridge.
    I always get a kick out of seeing huge towers with thin columns of tiny balconies that no one will ever use.

  8. I had a friend in construction that used to work on these towers, they called them chiclet balconies…

  9. “… tiny balconies that no one will ever use”
    Perhaps few would use them but hardly no-one. Smokers and claustrophobics who somehow bought a condo in a highrise anyways come to mind.

  10. I don’t really get the “balconies no one will use” thing, but maybe I’m weird. I’ve lived in a place with a small balcony, and while it’s true that I didn’t hang out or grill out there, I would almost always open the door in the morning for a quick step into the fresh air, and occasionally step outside to just stand and think. They’re much more useful and desirable than another 5-10 square feet of interior space, IMO.

  11. These balconies are like the last 1/3 of your speedometer. They’re put to use at the time of the sale and whenever you want to wow your friends.

  12. I wouldn’t buy a unit without a balcony. It doesn’t get used much but having a balcony above acts as a sun awning. So even when the sun is beating down the shades can stay open. There are far too many expensive units with nice views that that are forced to have shades drawn all day long. What a waste!

  13. Intheknow I don’t think so. ORH2 will be 541 ft. from the base at Harrison and Fremont to the top. ORH1 is 630 ft. from the low end of Harrison to the tip of the tower (622 f. from First & Harrison to top). Officially, ORH1 is 590ft. from the lobby to the top.

  14. balcony is also very useful to step out and dust something off. otherwise people might end up doing that in the hallway which is bad for everyone or else go down thirty floors.

  15. Ivan raises a good point.
    I feel like some developers chose to go the rental route in 2010-2011 because they were freaked out by what happened to the condo tower market between 2009 and 2011. Maybe they over-reacted?

  16. @grrr:
    Yes, ORH1 is “officially” 590′ because that’s how tall it is! That’s how the Planning Dept measures height and that’s how any body that measures skyscrapers would measure the height — from the base of the tower at street level to its top. To measure the height of ORH1 from the corner of 1st/Harrison is laughably absurd, since the base of the tower sits way up the street, a good 40′ elevation rise. The podium at 1st/Harrison is not part of the tower, structurally or otherwise.

  17. this project should lessen the damage 1 rincon tower did to the skyline. (what a disgrace). ironically, two 1 rincon towers might be better than one in this regard.
    and the teardrop shape of this fremont tower seems to echo arquitectonica’s folsom towers design nicely.
    obviously people were paid to closely consider the condo vs. rental proposition. I wonder what all the inputs are. and how does the vibe differ in a development slated for rentals vs buyers? (and when the majority of buyers are foreigners or suburbanites that are mostly absent).
    there’s so many buildings going up it’s difficult to keep track – despite trying to follow things on SS for some time now.
    all the construction might dovetail nicely with a general economic recovery.
    but I wonder how many residences, hotel rooms, office space etc are being added over what timeframe. it seems like an absolutely massive amount. somebody must have made a nice gantt chart with a map overlay. I’d love to see it.
    on the one hand I’m stoked – the city feels pretty dead to me. we need more people and a lot more commerce. that’s what makes a city. culture emerges as a byproduct.
    maybe the rascal energy and funky creativity I associate with sf and northern california (of the 80’s and early 90’s) never really returns. it was easy to scoff at the ideology of trickle down economics when reagan was governor but now I’m hoping all the cranes at work will bring in more people and money and jobs, like a coral reef substrate where more culture can take hold.

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