Plans for an 80-unit townhome development to rise on odd-shaped, 1.72-acre parcel on the hillside above the Laguna Honda Reservoir, between Clarendon Avenue and Warren Drive, were approved back in 1972 but building permits for the site were never requested and the entitlements for the development expired.

A few years ago, a meeting was held with Planning to discuss re-entitling the development of the parcel, a parcel which is technically only zoned for the development of one single-family home (RH-1). And while a re-entitlement of the parcel has yet to be secured, the property, dubbed 600 Clarendon, is now on the market with a $8.9 million price tag, touting “a unique opportunity to design and build” a multi-unit development on “one of the last undeveloped parcels” in Forest Knolls.

And while acknowledging that the parcel isn’t currently zoned for more than the development of a single-family home, “the city has recognized the unique potential for new and higher density housing on the site which will fall under the new housing and development goals of San Francisco,” according to its agents, and the possibility for an “upzoning” exists.

We’ll keep you posted and plugged-in.

Comments from Plugged-In Readers

  1. Posted by The Milkshake of Despair

    Upzoning this parcel is nearly certain. The number of units allowed will likely be determined by street capacity.

    • Posted by jimbo

      they can expect a big “save the trees” fight coming

  2. Posted by AA

    The developers are demonstrating remarkable bravery here.

    • Posted by Brahma (incensed renter)

      Uh, no. The developers are demonstrating cowardice; bravery would have been proceeding to obtain the building permit and actually building when the entitlements were approved back in 1972.

      What you probably meant is that if someone actually buys this property in the space of the next year and tries to build on it, that will be a demonstration of remarkable bravery.

  3. Posted by Dave (Seattle dude)

    There was a much larger multi-unit project proposed for the site downhill from this one. 350 or so units IIRC. The developer abandoned the project which I believe had been approved. The entitlement was put up for sale 3 or so years ago. Does anyone know the current status of that entitlement? Did it sell? Is it still active?

  4. Posted by Notcom

    “approved back in 1972 but building permits for the site were never requested and the entitlements for the development expired.”

    1972?? 1972!!

    Brahma: (I’ll be bookmarking this one so I can point to it next time some chain yanker starts bemoaning how long it takes to build anything in San Francisco due to The City’s slow bureaucratic processes around construction) get your bookmark ready !!

  5. Posted by Pierre

    The obvious question here is how would this lot even be accessed? The south side of Warren Drive is built-up with houses, Ashwood Lane on the east side is only a pedestrian path/stairway, and only unbuilt spot on Clarendon is part of the PUC owned land next to the reservoir, and from the looks of it would require a very steep and winding road to get up to this lot.

    • Posted by SocketSite

      There would appear to be an access easement running along the upper tree line on the PUC property, above the reservoir to the west.

    • Posted by Hayes Valley Denizen

      Just eyeballing it, probably convert Ashwood to a full street, and add a loop off of clarendon past the homes down there.

  6. Posted by Miraloma Man

    Why? Everyone has left or is leaving San Francisco. This will never happen.

    P.S., I’d rather the Stellar’s Jays had it.

  7. Posted by Charlie in SF

    I see that back parking lot at Laguna Honda and WTF is wrong with our City??
    Why is there no housing there, or at least a NavCenter?

    • Posted by Miraloma Man

      They’re planning a massive homeless shelter on the site of Juvie once that closes.

      • Posted by tfourier

        Seriously? Thats completely nuts. Bringing a large number of junkies, street crims and mentally ill into quite residential neighborhood with little infrastructure. Thats going to end well.

        Whose really totally stupid idea was that? The same people who say kids under 18 should never have to pay a price for criminal behavior, not matter how serious?

        What these “homeless advocates” never learn (for the short time they live in the City while passing through) is that unless you enforce mandatory treatment programmes people stay on the streets. And if you give away lots of free stuff and refuse to enforce quality of life laws there is an almost infinite reservoir of street people who can move to SF from elsewhere. A couple of hundred thousand street people across the US at any given time.

        At the moment there are about 9K / 10K on the streets or in the system. If they build 10K places (and they are actually used) I can guarantee you another 10K or 15K street people would arrive soon afterwards. Looking for free stuff.

        You cannot solve the “homeless problem” by building shelters. Because the problem is not a lack of “homes”. You solve the street people problem by forcing them into treatment programmes or else move them on and back to where they came from. Where there might at least be some support network for them. For the mentally ill you need state law changed so it is future proofed against the ACLU and its criminally irresponsible lawsuits.

        Sticking a couple of hundred street people in buildings on Woodside Ave just guarantees you will end up with a Twin Peaks annex to the Tenderloin in a pretty short period of time.

        Why not just build (or convert back) a couple of thousand SRO beds in the Tenderloin and South of Market. That would actually do some good and make a real dent in the problem. After all it was the loss of many thousands of SRO beds in the 1960’s and 1970’s that kicked off the current problem. How many SRO beds were lost to the Moscone Center to pick just one example. Must have been a least a thousand or more.

        SF needs fewer “homeless shelters” not more. But it does need large number of SRO bed built, for the quality of life laws enforced, and a lot of tough love for the drunks and addicts. That would actually make street peoples lives better long term. And everyone else’s too.

        • Posted by two beers


          While “forcing them into treatment programmes or else move them on and back to where they came from” might mitigate the extent of local homelessness a little bit for a little while, it won’t address the root cause, which is historic levels of inequality featuring the worst social safety net in the industrialized world, rampant asset speculation making entry-level housing unaffordable to anyone at the entry level, and a lack of decent jobs for people without grad degrees in symbol manipulation. Until these root causes are addressed, anything else will just be a band-aid.

          • Posted by jimbo

            the root cause for a significant amount of the homeless issue is addicition. houising unaffordability clearly a factor too, but addiction leads to not being able to keep a job, family, housing, etc. Foreced treatment is one solution. It wont solve the whole problem but will put a big dent in it

        • Posted by Brahma (incensed renter)

          Well, no one is saying that S.F. is attempting to solve the homeless problem by building shelters. Shelters are an attempt to deal with the symptoms, in the same way that putting a bandage on a laceration does not “solve” the underlying cut, it just helps you deal with the symptoms.

          With regard to “You solve the street people problem by forcing them…back to where they came from”, if ranters and ravers actually look into it, San Francisco spends a significant amount of money on one-way bus tickets for the homeless here to go back to where they came from.

          Lastly, newly-built SRO units would be market rate and would actually be pretty expensive and likely be taken by new college students or recent graduates who didn’t want to live with roommates, so homeless people that can’t afford a rent-controlled apartment with a voucher but no job aren’t going to be able to rent a market-rate SRO unit, either.

          What kicked off the current problem is widespread acceptance of debilitating drug abuse and decriminalization of drug dealing which perpetuates it, not the building of the Moscone Center.

  8. Posted by hmmm

    This site should just not be developed. There is zero reason to build on any of the very few undeveloped hillsides in SF, especially one like this that is part of a contiguous open space. Also, the City can’t be forced to provide access across its property to a landlocked parcel. The City should just buy this.

    • Posted by Ohlone Californio

      The City should not be buying anything until it sorts out the pension and school board fiascos.

    • Posted by Miraloma Man

      I agree wholeheartedly. But we are in the decided minority among the “Build It!” Crowd here.

      Destroying this little bit of open space would be preposterous and any eyesore to say the least.

  9. Posted by Miraloma Man

    My guess is that this project is merely a “hostage-taking” intended to get the City to pay top dollar to make the “project,” that was not even viable anyway, go away. We are seeing a lot more of these today: crazy, virtually unbuildable projects proposed for scraps of open space. It’s a pretty easy way to make a lot of money without doing much of anything.

  10. Posted by Jimmy the Kid

    a little bit of open space? district 7 is awash with open space.

    EDGEHILL MOUNTAIN (NAP) 2.33 acres
    Edgehill Mountain 2.33 acres
    Lake Merced Park 608.49 acres
    Street Park: PACHECO ST (GARCIA/VASQUEZ) 0.39 acres
    Juan Batista Circles 3.07 acres
    LAKE MERCED (NAP) 139.88 acres
    LAKE MERCED PARK 5.71 acres
    15TH AVENUE STEPS (NAP) 0.18 acres
    Golden Gate Heights Park 6.95 acres
    O’Shaughnessy Hollow 3.75 acres
    Villa Merced Park 14.65 acres
    Lunado Court 0.03 acres
    Grand View Park 3.91 acres
    Sunnyside Conservatory 0.25 acres
    Twin Peaks 54.59 acres
    Fort Funston 71.18 acres
    Miraloma Playground 2.2 acres
    LAKE MERCED PARK (NAP) 4.62 acres
    Mt. Davidson Park 40.71 acres
    Aptos Playground 4.81 acres
    White Crane Springs 2.68 acres
    Sloat & Junipero Serra Open Space 0.34 acres
    ROCK OUTCROPPING (NAP) 1.61 acres
    Corona Court 0.07 acres
    Midtown Terrace Playground 12.08 acres
    Brotherhood & Chester Mini Park 0.59 acres
    Stanford Heights Reservoir Water Facilities 1.15 acres
    15th Avenue Steps 0.51 acres
    Stairway & Pedestrian Way 0.01 acres
    Rolph Nicol Playground 3.04 acres
    Reservior Lands at Glen Park 10.15 acres
    Interior Greenbelt 21.35 acres
    Rocky Outcrop 1.61 acres
    Garden for the Environment 0.51 acres
    RESERVOIR LANDS 6.83 acres
    Street Park: TARA ST (GENEVA/TARA) 0.26 acres
    HAWK HILL (NAP) 4.51 acres
    TWIN PEAKS (NAP) 2.51 acres
    Stairway & Pedestrian Sub-Way 0.01 acres
    Hawk Hill 4.85 acres
    Mount Sutro Open Space Reserve 78.64 acres
    Entrada Court 0.42 acres
    Summit Reservoir Water Facilities 6.34 acres
    Brotherhood Way Open Space 8.22 acres
    MT. DAVIDSON PARK (NAP) 40.22 acres
    GGNRA 461.81 acres
    San Francisco Zoo 131.52 acres
    West Portal Playground 1.91 acres
    Grand View Open Space 0.65 acres
    Sunnyside Playground 2.35 acres
    GRAND VIEW PARK (NAP) 3.99 acres
    Glen Canyon Park 77.94 acres
    WATER DEPARTMENT, PARCEL 370 1.77 acres
    J.P. Murphy Playground 1.23 acres
    Lower Sunset Strip 10.46 acres
    Junipero Serra Playground 1.53 acres

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