Originally approved for development in 2010 but never having broken ground, the variance needed for the proposed 8-story development to rise as designed on the current parking lot parcel at 1 Franklin Street has since expired but the plans have been dusted off and the developer, JS Sullivan, will likely be granted a new variance next week.

The Market-Octavia development includes 35 condos over 2,700 square feet of ground floor retail space at the intersection of Franklin and Page.

And while originally proposed to be built with 18 parking spaces for auots in an underground garage, Forum Design’s design has been refined to include a storage room for 35 bikes, and a little more retail, but not a single car.

Comments from Plugged-In Readers

  1. Posted by seriously

    Great! Larger retail and excellent connections to Hayes Valley and Van Ness station. Can’t wait to see this lot developed.

    • Posted by gone on

      have you put your money on the line yet?

  2. Posted by foggydunes

    Exciting to see all these plans to undo the parking craters in this very central area.

    • Posted by unlivable city

      So true, F-dune. San Francisco is getting Uber crowded, and filling up with these Uber boring choc-a-bloc xeroxed bldgs, and they are filling up with Uber rich Uber dull people (or investors who live Uber far away. So WHATEVER happens from this point in our once Uber special city… everyone can just rely on Uber.

      • Posted by Brian M

        I agree.

        We need to start tearing buildings down and building more parking lots! More parking! More low density sprawl! Depopulation is the solution!

        So exciting suburbanites like Unlivable City can continue to pretend they live in a mythical 1950s village or somthing, not the core of a 7,000,000 person metropolitan area.

  3. Posted by spencer

    no parking is cool as long as they also restrict all of the residents from having neighborhood parking permits.

    • Posted by lyqwyd

      It’s cool either way.

      • Posted by Sierrajeff

        No, it’s not “cool” to build without parking and expect to externalize the cost of parking onto the public commons. Public spaces are a limited resource, developers shouldn’t be able to foist off the inevitable parking demands that a building creates without paying for it (one way or the other).

        • Posted by spencer

          yep and he knows that. Im all for cutting down car use, but in a housing crisis, people will buy homes without a parking space even though they have a car. They are willing to circle around and park many bloacks away. This makes the parking and congestion problem worse for the whole city.

          • Posted by anon


          • Posted by BTinSF

            In this area they’ll be circling until eternity because there’s almost no parking to be had. The building should have a few spaces for carsharing at least. The public transit nearby IS good enough that with access to shared cars for that special trip to CostCo residents shouldn’t need private autos. But the notion that everyone–even 80 year old grandmas and legless disabled vets–can ride a bike is wrong wrong wrong.

          • Posted by Alai

            Lots of 80 year old grandmas and disabled vets can’t drive, either, but I don’t see anyone banning distant subdivisions that are only accessible by car…

          • Posted by Lyqwyd

            Raise the cost of parking on the street and this “problem” is solved. Let the free market do its job.

        • Posted by Sam

          Why is it not cool? I don’t see why we should force a developer to accommodate cars. If people don’t want to deal with street parking they won’t live there, they won’t buy cars, or they’ll live there begrudgingly. I don’t care, I bike. Enjoy your car troubles

          • Posted by BobN

            “If people don’t want to deal with street parking they won’t live there”

            What if they moved in 20 years ago and put up with all sorts of crap (literally and figuratively) while helping to revitalize the neighborhood and now the competition for street parking has tripled? I guess they should just move…

          • Posted by anon

            Um, exactly. That’s how markets work.

          • Posted by Sierrajeff

            I didn’t say develpers should be forced to provide parking. (Though frankly I think that they should.) I said that developers should not be able to elect *not* to provide parking, as a way to reduce their costs, and thereby shunt the costs of parking to the public. Each development should be assessed based on *realistic* parking demands that it will create (not some pie-in-the-sky, “even 80 year old grandma will bike to Whole Foods” utopia), and if they don’t provide on-site parking to meet that objective demand load, then they should have to bear the cost some other way – whether that’s paying into a fund to build parking structures, or restricting residents from getting street parking permits (which affects the developer by reducing the value of the condos), or some other mechanism.

          • Posted by Lyqwyd

            And developers that build parking should have to pay all the costs that the additional driving will bring, such as road maintenance, reduced health, environmental harm, etc. cars and driving have been subsidized for decades.

          • Posted by Lyqwyd

            “What if they moved in 20 years ago”

            I would say they should be happy with the 20 years of subsidized parking and driving they got and stop whining?

          • Posted by spencer

            the problem is they will put up with having no parking, but still having a car. if they can buy a place for $75K less without parking, they will choose to suffer street parking, and that makes it worse for the rest of us. Im OK if new buildings dont have parking, as long as those residents are not allowed to have residential parking permits. otherwise it screws all of us.

          • Posted by The Milkshake of Despair

            spencer – are you sure about that? It defies reason that someone who intends to use a car would want to live in a building without off-street parking and where street parking is difficult.

            I’m not saying that there are unreasonable people out there but most folks who want to keep a car will elect to live somewhere that owning a car is not a hassle. And there are plenty of choices.

        • Posted by Futurist

          I agree. Eliminating all parking in this building is just insane. It’s once again the unbalanced approach our city leaders take, especially when they are constantly bullied by the bike coalition forces. Fact is that people buying units, many will own a car for their own choice and convenience.

          And people who continuously use the word “cool” to describe something they like is meaningless commentary.

          • Posted by Brian M

            The unbalance is merely in response to fifty years of unbalance in the other direction.

            You are generally pro-development, if I recall. How in the heck do you expect to keep dumping more and more cars into the City as it continues to densify? There is only so much surface street capacity.So, even if every new condo or office property provides vast amounts of new parking, I don;’t understand where you think these cars are going to go when mobile. Or what will happen if the owners need to visit older buldings or neighborhoods without so much free parking.

          • Posted by spencer

            just because someone has a car in a parking spot doesnt mean they will use it for most of their within city trips. I never take my car to vist friends homes within the city. i use it to commute, travel outside of city or groceries. others i know use in a similar way

          • Posted by Futurist

            @ Spencer: that may work for you, but I’m not about to start taking public transit to visit friends who live in Pac Heights or Potrero Hill from my home in Noe V. Heading over to see them for dinner and then thinking I would hop back on the 24 at 10pm to head home?? Seriously? Let’s talk about issues of safety, convenience and efficiency.

            Not about to happen for me when I own a car, and everyone I also know with a car would NOT choose the public transit method to travel in the city. Let’s be real: This is not Paris or London: I was there in those cities this past summer and we used the Tube and the Metro all over and it works.

            It doesn’t work here.

          • Posted by AnonA

            I can go from the Marina to Noe Valley in 10 to 15 minutes taking either Divisadaro or Scott or Steiner driving. Try going that distance from north to south in public transit and you are talking about 50 minutes minimum.

          • Posted by NoeValleyJim

            The nefarious Bike Coalition forces are 65% of the voting population? How can that be? Prop L went down hard Futurist, your extremist pro-car views have been shown as the antiquated vision for San Francisco as it really is.

          • Posted by Futurist

            Oh please Jimmy. Extremist? hardly. Read again. Most of us here making comments believe that using and owning a car in SF is necessary, not evil and last time I checked, it’s still legal.

            And shall be for the foreseeable future. Same as in London, Paris NY, etc.

          • Posted by The Milkshake of Despair

            Necessary? Hmmph.

          • Posted by Alai


            If you’re heading home at 10pm from a friend’s dinner, you can catch a cab/uber/whatever. Especially given that most people going to dinner with their friends may have a couple drinks.

    • Posted by Alai

      Ok, but they should be able to buy permits from existing residents who have them but don’t need them. Win-win!

      • Posted by gone on

        let the free market soar. This is great only the Jags, anmd MBs will be parking on the streets.

        • Posted by Alai

          What I find weird about these complaints:

          Cost of housing is $3000 a month? “That’s just the market”, “if you don’t like it move”, “why are you hating on success”.

          Parking costs more than $9 a month? “OMG something must be done won’t somebody think of the poor!”

          • Posted by Brian M

            Cars are a sociopathic technology. The sense of entitlement is amazing

            Sierrajeff: Working in “planning” I would merely point out that these “objective” parking standards which you insist are available are pretty conditional and arbitrary. And are currently in flux. Given the external costs of autombility, free and easy parking costs more than we think.

          • Posted by Sierrajeff

            Please point to where I said it should be free.

          • Posted by spencer

            “sociopathic technology” . really?

        • Posted by Brian M

          Because the million dollar condos being built now will generate a ton of Toyota Yaris drivers!

          • Posted by Brian M

            “Sociopathic technology”.may be a strong term, but consider this:

            1. It provides people with a ton of power. 200 horsepower in a midlevel sedan. Think of that, the power of 200 horses. This power can trun mild mannered minor bureaucrats into assholes. Note I say “can”, not “will” but observe the typical day behind the wheel and deny that this power exacerbates negative human personality traits.

            2. It isolates people from other people. When ensconced in a car, you cannot really see other people, directly observe body language or social cues.

            3.Relatedly, the car protects us from some of the consequences of our behavior. We are ensconcced in two or three or even four tons of carefully engineered steel, plastic and glass. The mythical bicycle menace on our streets is nothing….In many cases when you hit a pedestrian on a bicycle, you go DOWN hard. In a car, you are protected from any real consequences.

            4. The infrastructure needed to service cars creates inhumane cities. Parking garages, parking lots, huge freeway overpasses, wide streets filled with fumes.

            I am being apocryphal here. I drive a car myself. Too much. But I just remind myself of the damage done by this technology, even as I acknowledge it is incredibly liberating as well.

            So…ban cars? Of course not. That is a fantasy program. But to demand that EVERYTHING in planning and building and design be dedicated towards making it easier and more comfortable to drive cars into a highly constrained, already heavily impacted environment like San Francisco…I don’t think so, either.

          • Posted by Futurist

            My my Brian: really? sociopathic technology? Wouldn’t you call that a bit dramatic.

            Ok, we get you don’t like cars, and yet you own one. Guess what? They’re not going away anytime soon. We have them in SF and will for many many decades into the future. All big cities have cars and they have survived. Ever been to London, Paris and Rome?

            I don’t see those cities in great decline because of cars on the street.

          • Posted by bus rider

            @Futurist: Great and crowded cities like Paris and London, and more recently New York (and, very slowly, San Francisco), become even more livable, desirable, and pleasant by creating pedestrian plazas and streets, by promoting and improving transit, walking and bicycling, and by restricting parking (and, in some cases, implementing congestion pricing). Brian M is right on.

          • Posted by Anon

            London, New York and Paris are COMPLETELY different types of cities than San Francisco! We are a very small city that is part of sprawling urban region of lower density than the Los Angeles area. For an area of 7 million people, our transit choices are incredibly poor. Hating car drivers and taking away their options will not erase decades of little or no transit construction.

            Also- “bus rider’, you sound very similar to “NowValleyJim” who had to admit that he owns a car after months of posting anti-car rants on this site.

      • Posted by spencer

        agree with that, but no new permits in new construction buildings.

        • Posted by Brian M

          Futurist ignored my post as to why I consider cars “sociopathic technology” (and I am a driver myself. I never denied that, and I see my own impatience and sense of entitlement and all that).

          I am being somewhat apocryphal, but he ignores my more serious question: I don;t recall Futurist (or you, Spencer) as being automatically slow or no development. Maybe I recall incorrectly and you ARE slow growthers or NO growthers….that would at least be somewhat consistent. But…again…how do you expect a city as dense and constrained as San Francisco is to keep accepting more and more resident cars if we keep building residential high density housing and more office and technology jobs keep entering into this physically constrained market? Surface streets are already jammed during rush hours. If every condo owner has his own space, most will use their cars on a regular if not daily basis. And…that use has consequences for the environment and quality of life in the City.

          And Spencer: your visit to friends during the evening illustrates the problem. You will need a parking space not only for your place of employment, for your residence, for your daily activities (because we insist on living a suburban auto-centric lifestyle in a dense city! America Hell yeah!) AND now a space for when you visit your friends. That’s a lot of car storage space…expensive in a city of this cost and density, isn’t it? And nobody is miraculously expanding Market Street or the Embarcadero or other main streets to accommodate this flitting from place to place ensconced in four tons of metal and plastic.

    • Posted by S

      all the parking around there is metered anyway

    • Posted by gone on

      just prevent them from having cars. Problem solved!

  4. Posted by Ben

    What a unique looking building. Never seen anything like it in San Francisco.

    • Posted by EcceMorons

      LOL. Brilliant.

      • Posted by Sparky

        Ditto. Especially if the units feature all white interiors.

      • Posted by swiftamine

        I wonder if people were thinking the same thing back when they were building all those victorians.

  5. Posted by sassyboyfrisco


  6. Posted by Sparky

    Is there a large group of condo buyers in SF willing to forgo a parking space? I am curious about the selling price for such units.

    • Posted by lyqwyd

      Yes, the condos will generally sell for about $50K – $100K less than an equivalent unit with a parking space. A big savings for those that don’t need a parking space.

      • Posted by spencer

        or for those that do need a space, but are willing to save $50K for housing and just circle the block parking for 30 minutes a day. Even if the unit doesnt come with parking, most people who are buying condos will ahve a car.

        • Posted by timbad

          this is sort of the crux of the whole discussion, isn’t it? namely, are the people who move in there going to 1) not have cars because either that was already their choice or see this location as being suitable for forgoing them, or 2) have a car anyway, and cause problems for others by using up some of the precious common space to store them? how do we know, beyond speculation?

          • Posted by AnonA

            Was reading an interesting article (on Vanishing New York blog) about how affluent newcomers to Manhattan are selecting to have a car. Older NYers mostly of more modest incomes would never dream of owning a car, but the new breed of trustafarians and traders demands cars. I will be curious to see if the same thing happens in San Francisco as property and rents get ever more expensive.

          • Posted by Sierrajeff

            Exactly. And for me, the issue is that even if 34 of the 35 owners don’t have a car – for *any* reason (don’t want one, elect not to get one due to parking issues, whatever) – that still means that this building is going to add one more straw to the street parking crunch.

          • Posted by NoeValleyJim

            Who cares? Do you think that you have a unique claim on the commons for free storage for your automobile? The best use of the land is for more housing, not for a free place for you to store your stuff. Get used to paying the market rate for parking, just like the rest of us have to pay the market rate for housing. Your free ride is over.

          • Posted by anon

            The “street parking crunch” is something created by the city by providing below market parking. Fix this mistake and we no longer have to worry about “fixing” anything else.

        • Posted by Lyqwyd

          Then don’t provide free street parking at the city’s expense. Problem solved

  7. Posted by Brian

    I’ll bet the building next door can’t wait for something to be built there. Constant graffiti and nefarious goings on in that parking lot.

  8. Posted by Conifer

    The best solution would be to pass a law making it a felony to own a car if you do not have a parking space. If you are caught owning a car, you will get a life sentence at hard labor. That is the best way to stop those horrible machines from getting into our pristine city.

    • Posted by elsewhere == nimby

      of course it is ok to live in SF and own as many cars as you want. You just have to keep them in Oakland. They have plenty of parking and only a quick BART ride away. Then you can start the workday with a reverse commute to your commute.

    • Posted by Puny muscles

      That is funny! I will be serving two life sentences then. Hard labor = free gym membership w/ personal trainer. Wait, I have parking spaces. Still, can I sign up for hard labor then?

    • Posted by anon

      I don’t really see anyone here being “anti-car”, everyone is split into two groups:

      1. Those that want parking to be market-priced
      2. Those that want a government bureaucracy to force private citizens into providing excess parking to keep supply above demand.

      I guess that I shouldn’t be surprised that many San Franciscans fall into the socialism-will-totally-work-best for this, but geez.

      • Posted by Spencer

        anon. that was a totally objective and ubiased splitting of people. great job.tic

        • Posted by anon

          Thanks, it’s sad to see that you’ve moved from the #1 group over to the socialists in the past couple of years. I guess age moves you to the left?

  9. Posted by MoneyMan

    The city should ban all parking in all locations. That would immediately accomplish their plan to eliminate car use in the city. Put one big parking lot in Daly City and everyone can bike in from their. Cars would be forbidden in the city. Mission accomplished–why do it gradually?

    • Posted by Brian M

      Of course this is exactly the City’s plan, “to eliminate car use in the city”.

      Your proposal is still too slow, though.

      Myself, I think we should install vaporizer ray guns at all streets coming into the City. Zap! Cars eliminated. Which is their nefarious plan all along. Bwahahahahahaha!

      We must revolt! Perhaps a Critical Mass of 6,000 pound SUVs each with an individual driver who needs the four wheel drive and towing capacity for his trips to the corner store?

      Tear down the new buildings and replace them with parking lots. Becasue free car storage is the most important thing in San Francisco right now!

      • Posted by spencer

        what about just killing people who own cars.? those people obviously dont car about SF or the environment or about hipsters. and while we’re at it, lets secede from the US and California, and see if the Netherlands will annex us. we should also kill all tech people and only support artists and the marijuana industry

        • Posted by Brian M

          Finally, a program we all can get behind!

      • Posted by Wannabe Vaporizer Gun Owner

        I want the Japanese style of stackable car garages in these new buildings right now. You just push a button like a vending machine and out comes your car. Highest and best use of limited space. Invented by the Japanese.

        Do those vaporizer guns only work on cars, or can they be tricked out to be used on Supervisors?

        • Posted by Brian M

          Wannabe: How expensive per space are these toys?

  10. Posted by JB10

    It looks odd and is too tall. What is it with building too tall? A modern appartment with no characer such as this one would be OK as infill but it looks a mess when it towers over neighboring buildings.

    • Posted by Sierrajeff

      Oh for the … it’s 8 stories. There’s a building on the adjacent corner, looks to be 60 years old (or more), that’s 7 stories. 60 years ago, that brick building was seen as a sign of progress, a great thing. Now we try to build pretty much exactly the same height, and people whine and moan and wring their hands about the destruction of San Francisco.

    • Posted by Michael

      I hope you’re being sarcastic. Too tall? It’s on Market St!

  11. Posted by Voyeur

    Is this a stock photo? Could be new building in SOMA, Dogpatch, Mission, Polk. No parking at all is idiotic.

    • Posted by Brian M

      Because in the good old days, every neighrborhood you mention had completely unique local styles that immediately let you know where you are! Oooh! That’s a Dogpatch Earthquake Shack. You will see absolutely no building anything like it anywhere else in the City. And that Mission District Victorian is utterly distinctive as well! No regional building styles that reflect the era in which they are built! Every building a unique and perfect flower designed to reflect precisely the site and the specific and unique culture of its block!

  12. Posted by Jake

    Zipcar uses the existing parking lot at this location. They list 6 cars available there now.
    I think incorporating a car share into the new building would be very attractive to many buyers that don’t need a car to get to work. There are some security issues that would be easier to address in a new building than retrofit.

  13. Posted by Alai

    So it was the developers who voluntarily nixed the auto parking, and not the city?

    • Posted by Lyqwyd

      Yup, it will save them loads of money not to have to build underground parking… And apparently the market is fine without the parking, all the hyperbole aside.

    • Posted by anon

      But, but, it’s always the city forcing developers to build too little parking!!!

  14. Posted by Jake

    The existing private parking lot has very large curb cuts. If they were fully restored it could create about 6 additional on-street parking spaces. Also, while most of the street parking in this area is metered, some of the small streets are not. This location is not currently in a residential parking permit area. It is about one block from area S.

    • Posted by kbbl

      Area S is a leviathan. City won’t expand it. Maybe more coverage if it’s broken into 2 zones.

  15. Posted by Mission

    The building is not very big so adding underground parking would be a significant additional cost per unit. The people behind this developer entity have been sued a lot for shoddy construction so I’d be careful with these.

  16. Posted by Dan

    Unless the residents manage to get added to the S residential permit area, street parking will be tough here.

  17. Posted by friscan

    I’d buy a condo there if it were under $800K and had some certain amenities: I make a good salary. I don’t have a car and don’t expect to buy one. I am looking for housing near downtown, near major transit for that reason.

    I am certain there are more than 34 other people like me.

    • Posted by Conifer

      You, friscan, embody the dream of all anti-car planners, so-called progressives (but really central controllers), and devotees of Daly/Gonzales/Agnos/Campos/Mar/Avalos/Peskin. They need you and want you, for you are their only hope to vote for continued political power.

      • Posted by Brian M

        Oooh, Friscan. Conifer TOLD YOU. How dare you express a market preference for something other than the National Utomobile Slum.

        I’m surprised Conifer didn’t call you an UnAmerican Communist! I bet you you voted for the Muslim-Kenyan Usurper as well, amirite? Goota fight the power, Conifer. Because there are absolutely no choices for suburban autosexuals like yoruself anywhere in the Bay Area.

  18. Posted by Reynolds

    This is a joke. The developer wants to build 8 stories over retail and provide zero setback on a 3′ sidewalk against the freeway that is Franklin Street. This will be numerous pedestrian fatalities wating to happen. If the City allows this to go through without a wider setback, the developer and responsible City Planner should be held financially liable for any traffic vs. pedestrian collisions. With the 10,000 housing units soon to be built within 1000′ of this corner, it would be grossly negligent to approve this design.

    • Posted by not your own facts

      Reynolds, looks like the sidewalk is 9 feet wide.

  19. Posted by Anon94123

    9 feet is not a very wide for a sidewalk in an urban neighborhood. We have much wider sidewalks on the RESIDENTIAL part of Scott street in the north Marina (north of Chestnut). I would not be surprised if Chestnut sidewalks are at least 15 wide as well.

    • Posted by not your own facts

      yes, 9 feet is not very wide, not that anyone said it was. Much wider than 3 feet. 3 times as wide.
      Scott north of Marina does have 15 feet or so of pavement from curb to building and not much else besides a few scattered trees. Chestnut gets by with less, about 12 feet. The wide and nearly barren sidewalks of many Marina residential streets are among the least attractive features of the neighborhood.

    • Posted by Joel

      South of 19th St, Valencia only has ~7ft wide sidewalks and is getting more foot traffic and new projects being built.

      • Posted by Brian M

        Set up a guillotine for the traffic engineer and the planner when the inevitable accidents happen! (There will ALWAYS be accidents!)

    • Posted by Brian M

      Is 9 feet so narrow that there would be a traffic-pedestrian apocalypse as predicted by Reynolds?

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