1979 Mission Street Site

In an attempt to win-over local opposition to their plans for building a ten-story condo development with 300+ units above the 16th Street BART station on the northeast corner of 16th and Mission, Maximus Real Estate Partners is now offering to build new classrooms topped by an elevated 14,000-square-foot playground for the adjacent Marshall Elementary school, replacing the school’s existing playground which would be shadowed by the development.

The impact of the proposed development on the Spanish-immersion school’s existing playground, and student body, is currently a strong rallying cry for those opposed to the development.

That being said, even if the School should become an advocate for the development, the 1979 Mission Street project will remain a lightning rod for those concerned about the ongoing gentrification of the Mission, including advocates for the homeless who fear the development “will drive the down and out from their hangout at the BART station plaza.”

36 thoughts on “Developer Aims To Undermine Opposition By Raising A Playground”
  1. The open criminal activity in the plaza is shameful. SF needs to start distinguishing between the down and out vs. criminals. Too often they are confused and used as excuses to maintain the status quo of bad public behavior.

    1. Agreed. I used to work nearby and it was depressing. I observed a mid-afternoon stabbing, countless people face down on the plaza, cynical paramedics annoyed by being called, needle use in public. By allowing the plazas to be messy, the city is enabling people to be self-destructive. Positive communities should be preserved but that’s not what’s happening at 16th BART.

  2. Hopefully the project goes through one way or the other. I was on this corner in the evening a few weeks ago on the way to dinner, and it is still one of the scariest parts in the city. Getting a big SOM designed condo building on this block would be a dream come true.

    1. Yes, I agree completely. And hopefully, gentrification will, in fact, drive OUT the criminal activity that surrounds this public location. That’s what gentrification can do. It’s part of the evolution of every desirable city and neighborhood.

        1. So TRUE. This is what most fail to see. As long as there’s no feasible way to remove SRO’s this area along with the TL will not improve. Although I have to admit it’s a far cry from where it was 15 years ago when you could be assaulted by transfer ticket salesmen, crack and heroin dealers right when you exit BART. Then round the corner and see junkies passed out with needles in their arms and crack heads rocking it up at high noon right right on the sidewalks.

    2. I pass through this station twice a day and have never been stabbed, robbed, or harmed in any way. Just wanted to throw that anecdote into the mix of “scary” experiences I guess the rest of you have had.

      1. Hundreds of thousands of people pass through this station every day and they aren’t ALL getting stabbed, robbed, or harmed. That doesn’t make the crime that does happen here any less significant or make me worry less about my daughter being in this area.

          1. yup. cause watching people consume drugs or humans defecating on the street is totally fine for the girl.

    1. Not for the families currently there of course, the ones who will replace them. They will thoroughly enjoy it, maybe they playground will include a day of the dead skull for old times sake

  3. To be clear, the proposal is to replace the EXISTING school playground by putting it on top of a new school building; both of which would be funded by the (evil out-of-state) developer.

  4. I don’t think 40 yards square is big enough……I wonder how big the existing playground is…..Perhaps that could be the template. They could always park underneath too. It might still be awkward getting the kids from the classroom to the playground. Maybe part of the playground could be on the school’s roof.

    1. I was curious too so I took a rough measurement of the open space they have now (including the colorful play structure part and all the colored concrete area) and its about 13,300 SF, so the proposed 14,000 SF improvement seems to be in line with whats there.

  5. A perfect solution. They should do the same thing with St. Mary’s (raise it up) so that the buidling at the corner of Kearney and Pine can be more than 5 stories high!

  6. My daughter attends this school and takes BART. I always walk her from the station to school every morning and walk her back whenever my work schedule allows (when I can’t make it after school I have arrangements for her to walk with the parent of one of her schoolmates). The area around the stations is so frightening… please build this project! The new playground and classroom space is just a bonus to the safety this development would bring!

    1. Yes! Hopefully parents like you can continue to speak up at planning meetings, since (inexplicably) some at the school seem to be opposed.

  7. SF University High School has a sports court on top of a five story building, so why not a playground? It would definitely make the playground safer from all the street activity. Seems like a good idea especially if the developer will pay for it.

  8. Great use of a new buildings roof space. We need to do this more often, not only for playgrounds but for public parks.

  9. Living a block away for 10 years, I have never fathomed how a city can let one small section of a neighborhood, right in the heart of urban public transportation, be so consistently ignored from policing crime. Remember “Mission Possible?” That was good for a couple of publicity shots for Newsom and that was it. I can’t imagine why any local resident or business owner would not be thrilled by this development. More people frequenting an area that have a vested interest in keeping the streets safe and clean WILL only help. Is the curb cut for the garage going to take away your parking spot? For the car that would definitely be broken into if not outright stolen if left there overnight? If you can’t build this above a BART stop, where? People complain about high cost of living and getting pushed out of neighborhoods… then start building!

  10. What is the current height limit here? And zoning. I did not know they could build ten stories here. Is there some spot zoning going on?

    1. The zoning for this location along Mission and 16th is 105-X, while the portion behind along Capp including the playground is zoned 55-X. The neighboring parcels are zoned 85′ or less.

      1. Raising the yard, building a school better designed for an urban area nearby. There are lots of alternatives that would allow for sensible use of what should be a high-density area.

  11. There has been a public elementary school located in the block along Mission Street between 15th and 16th since 1858 (Mission Grammar/Mission Primary School/Mission Elementary School/Marshal Elementary School). Bart opened at 16th and MIssion in 1973. Moreover, the Mission boasts one of the highest concentrations of under-18 residents in all of San Francisco. What exactly are you suggesting?

  12. 16th and Mission is/has been a dumping ground for every type of human tragedy

    I don’t care about all of the screaming and carrying on regarding “Getting pushed out” – Plenty of BMR and other Apt’s in the area. More being built.

    Build this. I will personally put up the cyclone fence to start demo and construction and hold the fire hose to clean this corner. It’s an absolute disgrace.

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