1515 South Van Ness Avenue Site

Not to be confused with the modern 40-unit building which has already risen at 1515 15th Street, Lennar Urban has filed a proposal to raze the McMillan Electric building at 1515 South Van Ness Avenue, between 26 th and Cesar Chavez, with plans to construct a 160-unit apartment building on the Inner Mission site which stretches to Shotwell.

As proposed, the six-story development would rise to a height of 65-feet along South Van Ness, stepping down along 26th Street to five stories and a height of 55-feet along Shotwell.  And twelve (12) percent of the 160 units would be designated as below market rate.

Aside from a proposed 1,740 square foot commercial space on the corner of South Van Ness and 26th Street, the rest of the development’s ground floor would consist of either apartments or programming for the project, including a leasing office, an amenities room for the residents and a private 7,803 square-foot courtyard.

An underground garage would provide parking for 90 cars and the average size of an apartment as designed is around 890 square feet.

Comments from Plugged-In Readers

  1. Posted by Resident of SOMA

    Wonder if good ol Patrick McMillan had to come up with hard cash due to his unfortunate partnership venture in Sloane nightclub… seems the club is embroiled in all sorts of lawsuits including wrongful death. Lawyers still earn more than electricians.

  2. Posted by S

    wow! I used to live a block away from this just waiting for this lot to get snatched up. Actually I heard my old building was also getting torn down (it was one unit over a storefront) to turn it into a multiunit building) so a lot of changes coming to the south Mission…

  3. Posted by Brad

    Will be interested to see the change in that area. There’s quite a bit of ‘dirty’ industry in that block.

    • Posted by Pioneer

      nothing “dirtier” than that wig factory 😉

  4. Posted by OMN

    There are a ton of projects within 2 blocks of that site. Big change, indeed.

  5. Posted by invented

    Brilliant location bridging Mission and Bernal — and a perfect flat bike corridor to booming Dogpatch, Mission Bay, and Bayview.

    Salvation Army on Valencia next?

    • Posted by MissionMom


    • Posted by Ryan

      Salvation Army next? It’s people like you that killed the vibrancy of this city. Why don’t you just move further south where you would be happier. You assimilate to a city, a city doesn’t assimilate to you.

  6. Posted by Dan

    OMN, I know there is affordable housing planned next door on Shotwell. What else is planned within 2 blocks of the site?

    • Posted by OMN

      The entire North Side of Cesar Chavez from Shotwell to Harrison (2 long blocks) is housing currently projects. The project you’re talking about is in addition to the ones that are already in place.

      • Posted by Dan

        Oh, I misunderstand your use of the word “projects.” Yes, it is good to have a market rate building in the mix with all of the affordable housing.

  7. Posted by Bernalwood

    I’d heard rumors about this for a while. The McMillan building was originally built as an Oldsmobile dealership:

    Anyway, I live a block away, on Precita at Shotwell. This is a prime site for new housing. Finally.

  8. Posted by seriously

    streetscaping cesar chavez has been the best thing. it’s kind of charming now.

    • Posted by Orland

      The CC redo has been rousingly successful at every level.

      • Posted by NoeNeighbor

        As long as you don’t have to drive on it during commute hours. Interestingly I don’t see may bikes on it.

        • Posted by NJ

          There’s a lot more bikes than there used to be, but sure it’s not the most pleasant place to bike. Maybe as Bryant and Potrero get built up…

    • Posted by jdbig

      Not terribly effective if the only commercial space is on 26th and S. Van Ness. There should be a potential commercial space on Cesar Chavez, where we invested in new streetscape for people on foot, on bikes and in cars.

  9. Posted by curmudgeon

    Resident of SOMA, that backstory on Sloan Club is interesting. I just read a few of the yelp reviews…sounds like it was a pretty skeevy place. Good riddance…I wish we could get the Loading Dock back

  10. Posted by BigV

    this is excellent news! I really hope this get developed without too much delay. This part of the mission could really benefit with a project like this, and SVN is an appropriate street for such high density….

  11. Posted by curmudgeon

    BTW, I have to assume this will be downsized. People in the hood will be screaming that 6 stories is too high, and it will be denser than what’s around. For reference the assisted housing on C. Chavez s 4 stories, the public housing (Bernal Hill Dwellings) is 3 stories, and the development over Walgreens @ Mission is 4 stories. I think this is only Lennar’s trial balloon; I can’t imagine that it will go forward this dense.

  12. Posted by Snark 17

    This is great for the neighborhood and the height seems totally fine in relation to what’s around. We desperately need more housing in the Mission. I would hope for quality construction rather than cheap stucco like what has recently been put up in this area, i.e., at the corner Chavez and Mission.

  13. Posted by Dan

    Cesar and Chavez affordable housing is 5 stories. Walgreens+condos is only 4 stories, but about the same height. The development may well end up only 5 stories, which is the planned height of much of the complex anyway.

  14. Posted by Sierrajeff

    Bury. The. Wires.

    Do that and I’ll be happy with them going to 10 stories.

  15. Posted by unlivable city

    Bet that’ll be super dooper pretty.

  16. Posted by Judy Berkowitz

    890 sq ft as the average apartment size in this proposed project?
    Kinda really tiny. Why build 141 units of such small apartments?
    I don’t get it. Will someone please explain?

  17. Posted by Dan

    890 SF is a typical 2 bedroom being constructed these days. It will be cheaper than a 1200 SF 2 bedroom. And if the spaces are well-designed, they can be comfortable, and even feel spacious at the smaller size.

  18. Posted by Live Smart

    That is helpful to know. The most difficult part is finding a really good architect who can maximize the use of space to appeal to renters in the short term and owners in the long term. Design once, appeal to many. Some older Edwardian homes fail to maximize useful space in today’s lifestyle.

  19. Posted by Marco

    Wow. When I remodeled my Queen Ann house nearby, the planning department wouldn’t let me raise my house by six inches to accommodate an in-law unit, despite being zoned RH-3. Now they want allow a demo of a single story building and turn it into a 6 story 160 unit building down the street? I think in-laws in existing houses would provide much more charming units than the monstrosity that they are proposing. With that kind of development SE Mission is going to be a bunch of nice old houses surrounded by giant complexes, completely ruining the neighborhood vibe. I hope the planning department really thinks this through.

    • Posted by The Milkshake of Despair

      That’s unreasonable to nix a project for an insignificant 6″ roofline rise. That small change would be imperceptible from the street.

  20. Posted by Dan

    The Mission between 26th St. and Cesar Chavez already is filled with large apartment complexes, most of them affordable– at least 4 other large complexes, plus one across Cesar Chavez– though north of 26th Street is mostly smaller buildings.

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