Plans to raze the 11-story Hearst Parking Center complex at 45-53 Third Street, which extends all the way to Annie and currently provides “a pleasant and safe place to park” for up to 800 cars, along with a car wash and California Pizza Kitchen, are in the works.
And as envisioned, a 52-story tower designed by SOM would rise up to 600 feet in height upon the Third Street site, with 354 units of housing over a 313-room hotel, 49,990 square feet of office space, and parking for 304 cars (and 233 bikes).
From the design team:
“The proposed 600’ tall tower will join other new landmark towers as one of San Francisco’s most important skyline-defining works of architecture. Its location, at Third Street and Stevenson, is at the epicenter of San Francisco’s 21st century cultural, employment, transit and urban residential core.
The tower will engage Third Street, the busiest traffic artery on the project site, with an Art Walk that extends the length of the block from Stevenson to Jessie Street. This “half climate” space, enclosed in a membrane of low-iron, super clear glass, will feature folding glass panels that open most or all of the Art Walk up to the sidewalk during good weather. This space will fulfill the zoning requirement for Privately Owned, Public Open Space. It will be filled with artwork, café tables, chairs and other seating for the general public and hotel patrons, office workers, and residents on the project site.
A publicly-accessible Cultural Great Room on Jessie Street proposes to provide a physical anchor for San Francisco’s established community cultural districts, including the SOMA Pilipinas – Filipino Cultural Heritage District. Like the Art Walk, it will have folding glass panels connecting it to the Jessie Street sidewalk and will open onto a new, open air, through-block cobblestone paved paseo connecting Jessie and Stevenson Streets.
In addition, a landscaped space atop the tower’s podium would provide an outdoor recreation area, with a glass enclosed swimming pool, “serving [building] residents and hotel guests year-round, regardless of weather conditions;” a cascade of north-facing terraces would provide panoramic city and Bay views for the tower’s upper-floor units; and a spiraling extension of the tower’s façade would yield wind-protected outdoor space atop the tower for the penthouse units below.”
But as we also noted at the time, the 45-53 Third Street site is currently only zoned for development up to 120 feet in height and in order to proceed with the development as envisioned, JMA Ventures will need to secure a spot up-zoning for the site.
And from Planning, which has just finished its preliminary review of the plans:
“The City’s building height limits have been created to promote a harmonious and unique skyline and consider key factors such as topography, and shading of public open space and sidewalks. The Department would need to take all the afore-mentioned factors into account when considering a height increase of any amount for the site.”
In addition, as the project site sits outside of the area covered by the City’s Transit Center District Plan (TCDP), the allowable shadow budget for Union Square, which is set with an absolute limit, would likely need to be raised in order for the tower to rise, a budget which was previously only raised to specifically accommodate development within the Transit Center District and based on a host of public, versus private, benefits the TCDP was slated to provide.
We’ll keep you posted and plugged-in.