1500-1580 Mission Street Massing

Currently zoned for development up to 320-feet in height, it was big news when Related California agreed to purchase Goodwill Industries’ Mid-Market site at the intersection of Mission and South Van Ness Avenue.  And if Related gets its way, it’s going to be even bigger news as the developer has drafted plans for a building to rise up to 400 feet on the corner and is positioning for an up-zoning of the site to accommodate the taller design.

If approved, the development on the west side of the project site would include 550 units of housing over 43,000 square feet of ground floor retail space and parking for around 230 cars in an underground garage.  The east side of the project site, as outlined in red above, is slated to be developed as office space for the City of San Francisco.

Local developer David Choo had been in contract to purchase the parcel in 2007, and then the market crashed.

Comments from Plugged-In Readers

  1. Posted by seriously

    Awesome! Can’t build here soon enough. I can’t wait to have another downtown in such a central, well connected area.

  2. Posted by Mickey

    Makes total sense, and great to see density this close to transit. A development this big could actually be a meaningful part of a solution to address supply/demand housing imbalance in the city.

  3. Posted by sos

    who’s the architect? that will define Related’s work. This could be a total waste depending on the architect. What’s actually shocking is the density of the project but lack of real green space. this area has no green space and really needs it. Shocking that they couldn’t incorporate more. Guessing that it will look like the ugly towers at the carwash. Eastern SOMA seems to get the good architects, Western SOMA does not. Too bad. It could actually become such a nice neighborhood and be a sister neighborhood to Hayes Valley, but nobody is building any character into anything in Western SOMA.

    • Posted by lala

      Similar situation in Dogpatch and Potrero Hill. Lots of cheap-looking faux industrial boxes.

  4. Posted by JB10

    Agree totally. A shoddy development, no green space, and lacking in human scale. Not to mention the usual canard that tall buildings lead to affordable housing -it does not.

    • Posted by Bob

      Can you please explain how this project will escape the SF legally required inclusionary affordable housing either on or off site?

      • Posted by VEN

        It won’t escape them. It will provide affordable housing up to and potentially exceeding the city requirement.

    • Posted by Spencer

      more units increase the supply, which limits growth in prices as fulfills demand. Unless you think demand is limitless, then it does affect price

      • Posted by Rob

        I consider demand in SF to be limitless. The land within the tiny city limits is very constricted, and now that we live in a global real estate market of 7 billion people, there is no way that demand could ever be satiated in SF. Subsidization and rent control is the only way to allow entry level to moderately skilled people to be able to live in SF. It will never become affordable for these types at market rates, no matter how many units are built.

        • Posted by mark

          I’m more than “moderately” skilled labor yet I cannot afford to own in SF. Please rethink your statement

          • Posted by Denise

            If you can’t afford San Francisco, you couldn’t afford Manhattan either. And when San Francisco is as dense as Manhattan, you still won’t be able to afford it. It will be just as expensive, and more crowded, and darker.

        • Posted by Spencer

          why do they “need” to live in SF? Do all the plumbers in NY “need” to live in manhattan?

        • Posted by JR "Bob" Dobbs

          “Subsidization and rent control is the only way”

          Not true — one could build tens of thousands of tiny (<300sf) units. The "market price" for such units would be low enough to be affordable without rent control (which has increased rents, by the way) or subsidies. Build them in the Bayview or Visitacion Valley. The problem with that is most who think SF is not affordable would not want to live in them – they want a big, cheap place that is not only in "SF" but in a good (i.e. expensive) neighborhood. So yeah, rent control or subsidies is the only way to get people into such homes. There is no social requirement to subsidize people into such homes (although I do believe there is a social responsibility to ensure that everyone has SOME roof over their head — doesn't have to be in the most expensive area in the country).

  5. Posted by Bob

    Get a flipping rope, people – it’s just a GD mockup!

  6. Posted by Keepitup

    I expect wind speeds to hit 90mph or better at street level on both sides of Mission with a tower this size. From the massing model I can imagine a need to place handholds for pedestrians crossing Mission and Van Ness…lol

    Mind you, I’m not opposed to this development I just know what it’s like to walk or ride a bike at that location today…it’s windy…very…very windy. I encourage the designer to do a complete wind study so we know what to expect on the sidewalks around this site if the project is approved.

  7. Posted by curmudgeon

    Comments about architecture at this phase are ridiculous and ill-informed. So sorry they didn’t make the massing diagram pretty. 😉 I’m fine with the height. But the City has GOT to do something about Muni Metro to make Van Ness a more useful station for this development and everything else happening in Hayes Valley/Van Ness/Market. It is my pet peeve, but it is ALL about having consistent, all day service in the Metro with four car shuttles. Van Ness is probably the MOST difficult station in the City to use during rush hour because everything is full.

    • Posted by Spencer

      a subway from van ness and market to van ness and bay would be very nice.

  8. Posted by Joseph A

    Happy about the height increase,

    But about muni the congestion could be solved by running express trains between Embarcadero and West Portal

    • Posted by Sierrajeff

      Agree with you in idealized theory (though presumably you mean express to Van Ness, as I don’t think there’s that much demand for an Embarcadero-to-West Portal run), but … where / how would these express trains skip over the locals? Muni originally proposed to build 4 underground tracks in the early 20th century, but alas built only 2 tracks in the end…

      • Posted by Joseph A

        Meant the train would start at Embaracdero and end at West Portal since both have natural turn around points

        • Posted by Sierrajeff

          Ah. I thought you meant a non-stop to West Portal 🙂

          Yes I’ve often thought a Market Street shuttle would be quite useful. Though it’s the same issue – capacity constraints – at rush hour, on a good day the trains are running every 90 seconds or 2 minutes… and if one of those hits a snag, the whole thing comes to a halt. Need more crossover tracks!

  9. Posted by Herb

    A few years ago Muni ran a shuttle to Castro. There seems to be a way to switch the outbound train to the inbound track.

  10. Posted by friscan

    Mid Market really is becoming our Midtown. Uncanny, even. It’s as if at some point in adolescence, big American cities share a DNA that starts dictating a growth pattern.

    • Posted by Spencer

      midtown is usually a nice area. i dont think this will apply to market and van ness for some time

  11. Posted by CBrinkman

    MUNI does run 3 car shuttle trains from Embarcadero to West Portal. I rode one a few weeks ago. Once the new trains on order are delivered hopefully there will be more 3 car shuttles.

    • Posted by mark

      I’ve been on these shuttles too but they require a second driver in the third car to open the doors since the driver running the train is only able to open 2 cars with his controls. Basically you’re paying someone a lot of money to open doors

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