300 5th Street Site

With the lease for the Shell station on the corner of Fifth and Folsom expiring early next year, plans for a slender eight-story building to rise on the western quarter of the 300 Fifth Street site, which is officially its own parcel, have been drafted by Elevation Architects.

300 5th Street Rendering

As proposed, the 905 Folsom Street building would rise to a height of 85 feet and includes nine condos (5 full-floor two-bedrooms and 4 half-floor one-bedrooms) over 1,300 square feet of ground-floor commercial space and a roof deck for residents above.

And as the existing service station’s underground tanks lie under the eastern portion of the two-parcel site, it’s possible the ground could be broken for 905 Folsom Street while the rest of the 300 5th Street site, which remains zoned for development up to 85 feet in height per San Francisco’s proposed Central SoMa Plan, is undergoing its required remediation.

47 thoughts on “Designs for a Slice of This SoMa Gas Station Site Have Been Drawn”
  1. Another unattractive Central SOMA project. It looks jarring juxtaposed to the building to its left.

    Is this being built to the lot lines? It appears that way. The City code needs to require a mandatory maximum building footprint for new buildings in the Central SOMA.

    It would have been much better to develop this entire parcel as one and not split off this corner. But that would take time and planning and the rush seems to be on the build ASAP to catch what remains of the current boom cycle.

    1. yeah, all of this comment is wrong. building is design elegant and appropriate; juxtaposition is with building next door is in line with norms on this side of van ness (even though that’s a dumb thing even to consider); the lot coverage/FAR everywhere south of market should be revised up and not down like you seem to suggest; the parcel ownership is not something the city should have any say over; and, finally, we are not rushing quickly enough to keep up with demand or we’d be looking at significantly lower rents and not just a plateau near the nation’s higher.

    2. “Is this being built to the lot lines? It appears that way.” Indeed, as it should be to make the best use of space!

      This is beautiful, appropriate development, and it’s refreshing not to see one big box across the whole gas station site.

    3. i really like the design. its a shame theres no parking here there as its a nice place to commute to freeway from

    4. Dave: not sure why you offer so much negative comment here a LOT. This is a handsome building and offers a nice juxtaposition to the adjacent building, AND adds housing to SOMA.

      The other part of the gas station site, most likely, will be developed, but why put down this particular solution?

      1. I don’t understand some SF residents. The city has beautiful antique neighborhoods which should be preserved. But the backlash against up-zoning SoMa and the Hub area at Van Ness and Market does not make any sense to me. These areas have some identity, but are for the most part urban gutters that may people would avoid…even during the day time.

        1. Their mindset is not unlike Mission dwellers who insist building more housing for people wishing to move into the neighborhood will actually spur displacement.

  2. I like it! An unusual lot creates an interesting building. I prefer a variety of different buildings rather than block wide mega-developments.

    1. Totally agree with this. Love to see a detailed, fine-grained streetscape rather than a massive building that requires bizarre massing to not appear like the elephant in the room.

      1. But you know the remaining 4/5ths of the lot will be developed as one multi-unit mass once the remediation is done.

          1. I would definitely like to see something other than multi-unit, common-entry development for additional residential options in SF. Even more large-scale projects of SFH’s even if town/rowhouses.

  3. The facade fronting the gas station will make for an epic mural until that corner gets developed as well.

    1. The way to make absolutely sure that corner never gets developed is to place an epic mural on the facade facing the gas station.

  4. In NYC (Williamsburg in particular) these sort of narrow, tall buildings that stick out above the neighbors are known as “finger buildings”

    1. One of my favorite things about Tokyo is how prevalent this kind of thing is (particularly for retail). Would that there were 5-8 story buildings with full-floor 1500sqft units. Naturally I don’t know what the engineering challenges in these buildings are, but 20×125 is 2500sqft, so it would be very cool to just build up on single normal lots.

  5. This doesn’t look too bad at all. Definitely nice that they aren’t using a random assortment of pastel panels for no apparent reason.

  6. YES!! perfect.

    This type of structure is what we need, first the South of Market, and moving on into the Outer Mission, Excelsior and Sunset.

    The specific designs may vary, but the form should be what is built throughout San Francisco – zero lot line residential buildings of 6-10 stories.

    Keep hope alive.

  7. If I’m not mistaken, that leaves two gas stations for the whole SOMA/South Beach/FiDi area. But no big deal, everyone in SF is preparing to sell their cars because we’re so transit friendly.

    1. I do not understand the hand wringing over loss of gas stations. SF is not very big. You could criss-cross the city thirty times on a single tank of gas.

      1. Let’s say you are running low on gas and want to get on the bridge or freeway. Now you have to drive all the way back to Sixth Street. This is one of the most congested areas on the planet with often total gridlock, and now we’ll have people driving extra just to get gas.

        1. There are 2 gas stations right by the bay bridge entrance on Harrison. If you’re trying to go south down 101 or 280, IMO the best place to get gas is in South SF/Brisbane just outside the city. Much cheaper and literally right off the freeway. It would be faster to get there than traversing SOMA. I do that commute every day and I never rely on sketchy SOMA gas stations.

          If anything we need less gas stations in central areas of SF. There are still plenty on the thoroughfares (Van Ness, Oak, Geary).

          1. Please won’t someone think of the gas stations!?!?!

            Pretty sure the market can be counted on to sort this one out. If people really need loads of gas stations nearby, a boutique gas station will open, selling premium $7/gallon eco-gasoline.

          2. The 1st/Harrison one is essentially unavailable on weekday afternoons without sitting in traffic for an hour.

        2. The “running low on gas” scenario can be contrived to object to removal of any gas station anywhere in the world. The solution is simple: don’t run low. If you do run low then it is an infrequent inconvenience, not a common tragedy.

      2. I guess it could be an issue for people that drive around SF for a living, but everyone I know that has a car rarely drives around SF enough to need to fill their tank in SF. We just fill our tanks before heading back into SF. I usually fill up out by I5 on my way to and from the mountains. Maybe about once every 3 months I’ll need to get a tank of gas in SF.

    2. I own a car in this city, and I have never had trouble finding somewhere to get gas. In fact I’ve never even lived away from walking distance from a gas station in this city. This is an absurd complaint.

      1. 1. I’m only talking about this one area, not the whole city. It’s a big area though. You obviously don’t live in South Beach. 2. Never “had” is the key word, wait a couple more years as every single gas station is replaced with condos.

        1. I live by a gas station – they just attracted the scourge. I am more than happy to see gas stations removed.

        2. I’ve lived in SoMa for well over a decade and I have only used the local gas stations a handful of times. Getting gas locally is expensive and it’s not fun to be stuck getting gas while a local stares at you for 5 minutes while asking for change. I will almost always get gas when outside the city and I suspect most others prefer to as well.

          1. See, this is why The Cult of Build More Housing will never amount to anything, a lack of broad forward vision. I leave you with a native proverb: “only when the last gas station is torn down, will you finally realize that you can’t run your car on condos.”

          2. You can run your car on electricity and plug in hybrids and electric vehicles are growth products. While I think they are being oversold for their environmental benefits, they are fine for city use and people who want cars in the city will just switch over.

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