Just down the street from where Kaiser Permanente had proposed to build an 84-foot high building at the base of Potrero Hill but met with enough resistance from the “Save The Hill” folks that they moved their building to Mission Bay, the owner of the one-story warehouse at 1301 16th Street has been quietly drafting plans to build a big seven-story building.


As drafted, the 68-foot tall building would front Carolina, 16th, and Wisconsin Streets and include 278 new dwelling units with a garage for up to 84 autos on the ground floor.

30 thoughts on “Another Big Threat To The Folks On The Hill?”
  1. You might want to notice that the 2 locations are not the same, check the street intersections. This is a couple blocks west, that is, if the location is correct.
    [Editor’s Note: Hence the “down the street” in the first sentence of our piece.]

  2. Yes, I’m pretty sure there will be another fight, just as there is a fight over the 320-unit project on Mariposa. Potrero Hill is not a dense neighborhood, so when high-density projects are proposed there will be resistance from the neighbors. That’s perfectly understandable and predictable.
    Currently the densest block on Potrero Hill is the Whole Foods complex which has 160 units on a full block – this is 278 units on half a block. If the city wants to upzone the 16th St corridor then they have a lot of work to do to come up with a decent traffic plan, which means untying the Gordian knot at 16th & 7th with the Caltrain tracks and I-280 overhead. This is not about NIMBYs trying to save their views, it’s about a neighborhood which has long been neglected in terms of infrastructure development.
    Personally I love to see some good infill projects – like the Onyx on 17th – but I know the neighborhood well and these big 200+ unit complexes just don’t fit.

  3. Pretty funny how some people are all in favor of upzoning and increased density, until it comes to their neighborhood.

  4. @formidable – I wasn’t aware the NIMBY fight had begun for the Mariposa St project. (Though if the opposition is voicing its grievances this early, it’ll hopefully be less of a drag later in the process.)

  5. 888 7th St is technically in Potrero Hill (ignoring the Design District name that hardly anyone uses) and it has about 225 units. I think developers should start closer to it and work their way south.

  6. Hey our neighborhood in SOMA would take these projects any day…considering that the MO Plan has decided to dump 450 foot towers less than 20 yards from our very small scale residential (45′) enclaves just off Mission and South VanNess.

  7. @NoeValleyJim, so are you saying that you can’t be in favor of density in downtown areas with good infrastructure unless you favor it in all neighborhoods?

  8. Ridiculous to even call this project part of Potrero Hill.
    It’s in the flats at the BASE of PH.
    Hope it gets built.

  9. Housing needs to come before infrastructure spending. It shouldn’t be that way, but folks are so selfish these days that if they get the sweet new infrastructure first they’ll simply rebel against additional development after it’s in place. The typical “I’ve got mine now screw you!” mentality.

  10. This is south of 16th St. so it’s definitely part of Potrero Hill. 888 7th St. is not Potrero Hill. I believe it was marketed as Mission Bay when it was built, although I’d probably consider it part of SOMA.

  11. @Futurist – Do you appreciate it when people define your neighborhood for you? This area draws on the same police, transit, commercial, open space and educational resources as the rest of Potrero Hill. That’s not to say this is either a good or bad project. But it is a project in Potrero Hill, nonetheless.

  12. The MLS also says the strip clubs on Broadway are in Telegraph Hill and the Castro doesn’t exist. MLS is bogus realtor lingo. Potrero Hill the neighborhood does not include the bum-infested wasteland between 16th, 7th and King Streets.

  13. My point being that the “real” Potrero Hill that the residents identify with is ON and WITHIN the hill itself.
    This site by geographical terms is completely in the flatlands and the real “hill” looks down upon this site.
    And, of course, I think it’s ridiculous that those protesting this project have to look down upon it and yet they also look down up much of the horizon, other buildings including downtown. They look down upon most of Mission Bay, as well.
    What’s the real problem? perhaps they just don’t like change.

  14. The owner may need to alter his plan to have the building topped by a 3 story hand extending a single finger towards The Hill.

  15. The real problem is that the city has been ignoring the neighborhood when it comes to transit planning, facilities, law enforcement, sanitation and other services. With Mission Bay and Dogpatch being developed and increasingly populated, the East-West thoroughfares through Pot Hill are seeing a lot of traffic. Not just 16th St, but Mariposa and 18th as well. Muni service is even more pitiful than in the rest of the city (and because all the bus lines through Potrero originate or terminate in the projects, most residents never ride the bus after dark.) Parking is not yet as bad as some other parts of SF but it will be soon if 1,000 net new units are added in 3 nearby locations.
    Infill development is a good thing, but mega-complexes are not sustainable until we see some real planning. Add a LR line along 16th connecting T-Third to BART or J-Church, accelerate the undergrounding of Caltrain to eliminate the street-level crossing, add a 22X and a 19X plus a new line that’s a straight shot up 7th. Just frickin’ do something! More open space is also needed. Jackson Park is constantly occupied by baseball and softball leagues making it dangerous for kids to play on the grass or anyone to hang out there. These complexes take years to build. No ground should be broken until there’s a committed plan to improve services.
    Call that a NIMBY attitude if that makes you feel smart or sexy. It’s a basic quality of life issue for the people who live and pay property tax in the neighborhood. And yes, they have lawyers too.

  16. Some clarification on the transit of Potrero Hill. There is no bus line terminate in the project that I am aware of. 10’s terminal is near SF General. 22 & 48 are near 3rd St. Maybe you mean 19, which terminates in Hunter’s Pointer. I don’t know I’ve never been there.
    Are you aware that 22 is proposed to be upgraded to a rapid transit line running along 16th St? That’s the actual implementation of the “22X” you are thinking about.
    People are saying Potrero Hill’s transit is worst than the rest of the city. The only problem is it is not quite true. Compare it to Noe Valley and you can see it how much more transit are available in Potrero Hill.

  17. To piggyback on FDotN, the Eastern Neighborhoods Plan was suppossed to fund the infrastructure necessary to accomodate the increased density. With parks dramatically underserved in the area and transit operating under ancient assumptions (see, e.g. TEP, T-Turnaround Loop), the fear is that Potrero Hill will acheive crisis conditions. Of course, if you ride the 10 Townsend between the hours of 7:30 and 9:30, you may rightfully think that the crisis point is now.

  18. Riding 10 Townsend toward downtown in 7:30 and 9:30 is totally fine. There are plenty of seats available until it arrives in Caltrain at 4th and King. Even then they are no more packed than other MUNI lines.
    The best things is, if the TEP plan gets implemented as is, there will be an unbelievable 3 times increase in transit service for #10!!! It is so unbelievable that I have actually seek verbal confirmation from a MUNI planner.
    Those who complain about MUNI is doing nothing are only complaining. They don’t really active follow transit planning.

  19. To those suggesting below grade parking, not economically possible in that area, which stretches all the way to the bay. Check the soils reports. Greater area around and including mission bay is a mess.

  20. The issue with the bus lines in PH is not that they terminate in the projects but they wend their way through the projects. This is a problem because criminals do stuff and then run into the projects to hide. Within the last month a woman was assaulted for a purse and dragged off a bus while it was going through the projects. I don’t remember the line. But this is a real issue.

  21. Pot Hill’s north slope is nice but it is squeezed between gangsters in projects to the south and bums in trashed RVs and homeless encampments to the north – not to mention the blight belts by the freeways to the east and west.
    More development will help to fix all that, but it needs to be owner-occupied homes and condos, not rented studios and 1BRs like that proposed Mariposa disaster. Put that crap in a neighborhood that’s not already surrounded by ghettos. Unfortunately with a Stuporvisor whose voter base is the Bayview there’s little cause for optimism.

  22. PH NIMBY – what do you suppose the owner occupancy rate is on the North Slope of the Hill? 50%? Condos get rented out too, you know?
    Placing blame on rentals is as sophistic as laying the blame for crime at the feet of the residents of public housing. It may make you feel better as a proud owner of market rate housing, but, then again, it appears that name calling makes you feel better as well.

  23. People renting newly built market rate apartments in SF are affluent, so NIMBY’s fears are unwarranted. Also, the projects on the south side are being rebuilt as mixed income, which will improve that side of the hill considerably.

  24. ” Also, the projects on the south side are being rebuilt as mixed income, which will improve that side of the hill considerably.”
    What high income people are going to volunteer for that? The scope of mixed income will be unemployed mixed with the working poor

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