525 Harrison Site

Adopted back in 2005, the Rincon Hill Plan requires a minimum distance of 115 feet between new residential towers at their closest point. And the plan specifies that no exemptions may be made.

As such, in order to make room for the redesigned tower proposed to rise up to 250-feet in height at 525 Harrison Street, the parcel upon which the Sound Factory Club currently sits 88-feet from the new residential tower at 45 Lansing (a.k.a. Jasper), legislative amendments to the Rincon Hill Plan, Planning Code, and Zoning Map for the parcel were drafted.

525 Harrison Street Rendering 2015 Revised

In exchange for the amendments, which increase the developable floor area of the site by over 20 percent and will allow Hines to build 205 units of housing, versus 179 as originally envisioned based on the site’s constraints, the development team has agreed to increase the percentage of on-site Below Market Rate units from 12 percent (as required by law) to 15 percent, for a total of 31 affordable units and a net increase of six (6).

The amendments, which were recommended for approval by the Board of Supervisors Land Use and Transportation Committee yesterday, do not, however, require a redesign of the redesigned tower to accommodate a future Bay Bridge off-ramp to San Francisco’s Transbay Transit Center, a ramp which AC Transit has deemed critical to reducing future transit delays but was prohibited by the podium of Hines’ original proposal.

If approved by the full Board, construction for 525 Harrison could begin as early as July 2016 and would take approximately 21 months to complete.

And in terms of future congestion, a joint AC Transit and Transbay Joint Powers Authority study concluded that, without a significant investment in transit infrastructure, conditions along the Bay Bridge Corridor are projected to “substantially worsen over the next decade,” affecting performance of Transbay bus service and the future Transbay Transit Center and potentially impacting, in the words of AC Transit, “the economic vitality of downtown San Francisco.”