A permit to raze the fenced off Divisadero Touchless Carwash building, the interior of which is in the process of being stripped, and the shuttered Shell station on the northeast corner of Divisadero and Oak has been requested and is close to being approved.

At the same time, a building permit for the approved six-story building to rise on the site, the application for which was filed at the end of 2019, is working its way through all the required structural, safety and Planning reviews and could be approved relatively soon and issued as well.

Slated to rise up to 65 feet in height on the corner, the 184-unit development will step down to 4 stories along Oak, with a courtyard behind the building, stacked parking for 57 cars, rooftop open spaces for the building’s residents, and 8,100 square feet of commercial/retail space which could be divided to accommodate up to 10 individual tenants.

And with a leaking underground storage tank (LUST) issue having been resolved back in 2003, the development is expected to take around 33 months to complete once the ground is broken, assuming no unforeseen SNAFUs.

Comments from Plugged-In Readers

  1. Posted by Neighborhood Activist

    Very glad to see this is moving forward, the shuttered car wash could very quickly become a big neighborhood nuisance. So many entitled projects are not progressing due to a variety of issues, mostly construction costs, that I’m happy to see a big one like this is actually gonna get built.

  2. Posted by Jim

    Yea! A blight removed and homes for 184 families. Can’t happen soon enough.

    • Posted by Mkt

      184 units with 89 studios and no 3 bedrooms…this is not a family friendly development. It’s for tech and other high earners

      • Posted by jag149

        I do appreciate that you’re responding to Jim’s optimism about its use for “families”, although I would challenge you to think about how you’re defining “family”, and why increased housing supply in a tech shuttle corridor wouldn’t be a net win for families. (Again, I appreciate you weren’t exactly making this point, but I worry about the consistent “whataboutism” pushing back against development in this town.)

        • Posted by Curious

          Brave of you to encourage nuanced perspectives on the internet!

  3. Posted by DAA

    The new building isn’t much to look at but it’s good this is moving forward. I just hope the 500 people that used to work at the car wash on any given day have all found work.

    • Posted by Never In Doubt

      500 people a day?

      ::skeptical emoji::

      • Posted by DAA

        It was a joke. You couldn’t pass this place during its heyday without noticing the insane number of people at work. Always wondered if folks there worked on commission or what?

  4. Posted by Orland

    Too bad there are no development scenarios on the horizon for the two locations at Fell & Diviz.

    • Posted by Pean Dreston

      People still need services. Gas stations are still necessary for society to function.

      • Posted by Alai

        The neat thing about gas stations is that just about anyone who needs one has a car they can (and probably already do) drive some distance, even outside the city, so they can easily be located in otherwise-inaccessible areas.

        • Posted by Sunsetter

          Sure, they can, so long as you are OK with the increase in miles driven that entails and associated increase in pollution and traffic. Losing this one isn’t a huge deal since there are two stations a block north of here, but this city does need to maintain some number of gas stations.

          • Posted by Alai

            What’s the average number of miles on a tank? 350? Even in the unlikely event that every last gas station in SF disappeared, It seems pretty unlikely that someone would drive 350 miles and never once reach Daly City.

        • Posted by Daniel

          More problematic is the loss of the car wash and the one on Geary. Ppl are now driving as far as South City to find a car wash. Or, wash on the curb, which is wasting water.

      • Posted by Anonymous

        Other developed countries figured out that they could safely put gas stations at the bottom of mixed use structures. We’re just too stupid to figure that out.

    • Posted by Panhandle Pro

      My hope is that the 76 gas station and the commercial office building adjacent to it (mostly empty ground floor retail, a parking lot) are acquired together and they make it one big residential project.

  5. Posted by Jim

    Yes but gas stations don’t need to take up a half acre in the middle of dense, walkable cities. There are thousands of gas stations on the ground floor of other buildings in major cities around the word. The deck over the ground floor parking garages has to be concrete anyway. Other safety measures can be incorporated, as needed.

    • Posted by kbbl

      As a practical matter the remaining gas stations are pretty traffic-calming for Fell and Divis

      • Posted by AndrewK

        Except when the cars on Fell constantly back up through the bike lane and into the traffic lane.

        • Posted by kbbl

          Agree that brain-dead might be *too* calm. At least they gum up aggressive left turns!

          • Posted by Kyle S.

            They do make the protected bike lanes on Oak and Fell feel pretty dangerous.

    • Posted by Sierrajeff

      I don’t know if US (or CA) zoning allows for that though. I remember seeing it in London and being surprised – it’s an efficient use of space, but also presents many safety hazards.

      • Posted by Kyle S.

        London and Tokyo are no strangers to fire, yet they believe it can be done safely.

      • Posted by Anonymous

        It doesn’t present any exceptional safety hazards. Americans planners are just way too bad at their jobs to understand that.

        • Posted by The Milkshake of Despair

          Yes, though gasoline is infamously volatile, it is quit safe when stored in sealed underground tanks. The main problems come when brought to the surface during fueling. California style vapor trapping fillers do a great job at minimizing the VOCs, but some will escape into the surrounding air. And though fortunately rare, there’s a chance that a spill can ignite, perhaps spreading to vehicles. So robust fire suppression needs to be part of the design.

  6. Posted by Build build build

    Happy this is being built, but… that’s one ugly building.

    • Posted by OMN

      Also happy about the project but think this will turn Oak into an even bigger mess during construction.

      • Posted by mike

        LOL I feel like it takes so long to build in sf that by the time its permitted the building architecture is dated. That looks like a style that was popular in 2015

  7. Posted by Panhandle Pro

    Once this project as well as 650 Divisadero are complete, Divis will really be bustling. DIvis is one of the few neighborhoods in SF on an upward trajectory right now. There are relatively few homeless people, it’s centrally located, close to two major parks (Alamo and Panhandle), with star restaurants in NOPA and Che Fico. The Emporium brings major crowds. It has some funk to it, between the black community, skateboarding subculture and more. The future of DIvis is very bright!

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