Having been in and out of contract a handful of times over the past couple of years, a sale of the former used car lot turned Firepie site on the northeast corner of Valencia and Cesar Chavez, which is currently leased for $7,800 a month, is once again contingent having been relisted for $1.998 million two weeks ago.

And yes, plans for a six-story building to rise up to 65 feet in height on the skinny infill site, with 23 residential units over 5,000 square feet of ground floor commercial/retail space, have been drawn, which is the full height for which the 6,620-square-foot parcel is zoned, not accounting for any bonuses.

But once again, the infill plans as envisioned have yet to be approved, much less submitted to the City for a preliminary review. And in fact, plans to simply reorient the existing trailers on the site and legitimize the setup as a “limited restaurant” have been drafted. We’ll keep you posted and plugged-in.

11 thoughts on “Mission District Infill Site Back in Play, But…”
  1. That whole Mission/Valencia/Cesar Chavez interchange is a glaring example of how unimaginative and dreary planning is in SF. It’s just soooooo ugly. Enough spray-on stucco painted in that “adobe orange” color as to incite an epileptic seizure and the brains of decent architects everywhere. At least the new hospital looks ok, and the old Sears building, but the rest of it? Oy vey.

  2. On the good side this design is nice. Lots better than the majority of medium size projects which mostly take their inspiration from the Sunset special of the 60s and 70s.The design should be tweaked to add a black cornice at the top to complement the cornice in the older building to the right as well as the framed black cutouts on the building’s facade.

    On the bad side – and the article itself all but says this – this is not going to get built anytime soon. If ever. Developers make a proposal, gain an entitlement and then hold off on building for years (One Oak) or try to flip the entitlement. This is why Oakland is opening double the number of new apartments and condos than SF is in 2021. Cranes everywhere in Oakland – not so much SF

    What to do? Do not automatically grant extensions of entitlements as Build Inc. has gotten with One Oak. Use it or lose it which would put a dent in residential entailment banking which has depressed new housing production in San Francisco for years now.

    1. SF also was filled with cranes in 2012-2017 when Oakland built nothing at all. Oakland got a very late start to this boom and overall has built fewer units than SF. I’m no Pro, but I would imagine the easiest money-maker projects dried up in SF, and thus Oakland became attractive?

      1. Even during the boom years SF was producing only around 2K units/year. Compared to Seattle’s 5K at the same time. The vaunted tech boom did not translate into a housing boom in SF. What a missed opportunity which may never return.

        Oakland is aggressively pursuing housing and expediting the process. Brooklyn Basin recently broke ground and the planned 3200 units is already being modified to include another 600 units. Another reason why developers are shying away from SF – the process which takes years and can effectively kill projects.

          1. With an average of only 740 units per year, including fewer than 400 in 2011, 2010-2013 weren’t exactly “boom years,” at least not with respect to housing production and demand (which didn’t start ramping up until 2012 when the market actually turned).

            Regardless, an “average of 2800” would be closer to 3K units per year, not 2.

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