Plans to raze the nine-story office building at 545 Sansome Street, which abuts the privately-owned Redwood Park at the base of the Transamerica Pyramid, between Washington and Clay, and construct a cylindrical 38-story residential tower dubbed “555 Washington” on the corner parcel were in the running to be approved back in 2010 but were thwarted by an appeal of the project’s Environmental Impact Report (EIR).

And while plans for an infill tower to rise on the corner parcel haven’t been resurrected, Aegon, which acquired Transamerica back in 1999 and is currently entertaining offers for the iconic Pyramid, Redwood Park and the two office buildings fronting Sansome Street (545 and 505), new plans for the corner parcel have been drawn, likely in an attempt to sweeten their offering.

As massed by Gensler, the footprint of 545 Sansome would be extended to Washington Street and upon a majority of the undeveloped portion of its parcel behind, an approach which would add 49,999 square feet of office space to the current building (for a total of 106,175 square feet) over 7,400 square feet of new ground floor retail space and a 1,000-square-foot privately owned public open space (POPOS) between the expanded building and Redwood Park behind.

We’ll keep you posted and plugged-in.

Comments from “Plugged-In” Readers

  1. Posted by redseca2

    There goes Sai’s

    • Posted by Footie

      Mmmmm Sai’s… curry chicken noodle soup – yum!

  2. Posted by Joe

    Replace the building with one that is essentially the same size? Is the existing building about to fall over on its own??

    • Posted by tipster

      Same height, but wider and deeper, essentially doubling the square footage. But of course, this is just being done to show the next buyer what *could be* done, they probably have no intention of doing it.

      • Posted by Dave (Seattle dude)

        Precisely. And kudos to the owners as they get ready to assemble the parcel for sale to envision a realistic 9 story building on the fully developed lot. Condos or offices, I’d bet the THD will not allow any major development on the site beyond a similarly sized building to the existing building.

  3. Posted by oakland lover

    Ohhhh man that other building, the cylinder, was so cool! This is so much more awful.

    • Posted by SFRealist

      The cylinder would have been interesting and cool. Instead we get another bland box.

  4. Posted by ldr

    I really liked the 2010 proposal.

    • Posted by tipster

      No one was going to let a 38 story building get placed directly in front of a 48 story iconic building, THE most iconic building in the city. It’s [foolish] that they even tried. See name link.

      • Posted by ldr

        The 38 story residential building would have been less than half the height of the iconic 48 story office building.

        • Posted by jimbo

          agree. see no issue with placing a 38 story building here. the iconic part of the TA building is the top 1/3 of it anyway. and i think the saleforce building is now the top icon. or to be fair, i dont personally think we have any building worthy of being called iconic

      • Posted by Invented

        Within 10 or so blocks of the Empire State, about 30 very tall buildings are being built that will change the prominence of the ESB. Is San Francisco an archive of its own memory? A museum?

        • Posted by SFRealist

          Are you new to SF?

          Yes, yes in fact you have it exactly correct. At the time, historic preservationists fought the Transamerica Building tooth and nail. Now that it’s built, historic preservationists will fight anything which is built near it.

        • Posted by SFMichael

          There is a huge difference between “10 or so blocks” and on the same block. The old BofA building is only 2 1/2 blocks away, and the Sales Force Tower is within 10 blocks.

      • Posted by van nessident

        You’re right, it’s totally unreasonable to put tall buildings anywhere close to other tall buildings.

  5. Posted by Notcom

    Is 545 an office building? I thought it was residential.

  6. Posted by RySF

    Build the BOX bigger they said. Imagination by lobotomy.

  7. Posted by John

    Yikes, that is one ugly building (both the original and the proposed replacement).

  8. Posted by MyOddCommentHandle

    I used to get my bagel and schmear at the small corner place next to 505. That 545 building used to be part of the TA RE holdings. The 20+ TA subsidiaries used to use that 545 building as a storage room. We had a whole floor that was just old office furniture and file boxes stacked chest high in 20ft rows.

    I really like that 2010 building concept. That place would do well if it were condo’d out.

  9. Posted by Sassy

    Why not a taller, skinny, modern addition?
    The existing building is rather nice.

  10. Posted by Bernalkid

    How about building that proposed Cenotaph for Newton there, 38 stories tall natch. Would be kind of cool looking on the skyline in a sort of mid-century way.

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