Purchased for $9.5 million at the end of 2017, plans to convert the landmarked Health Sciences Library building on the southeast corner of Sacramento and Webster into a 24-unit luxury development, with a seven-story addition to the building’s east and a five-story addition to its south, were subsequently drafted, as we first reported at the time.

Since refined and newly rendered by BAR Architects below, the proposed redevelopment would now yield 1 one-bedroom, 10 twos, 9 threes and 4 four-bedrooms units, as opposed to 24 two-bedrooms as originally proposed, with off-street parking for 26 (stacked) cars and 1,600 square feet of rooftop open space for the building’s residents.

While the Pac Heights parcel is only zoned for development up to 40 feet in height, and a total of 19 units, the project team is planning to seek a State Density Bonus for the additional height and density as proposed, the applications for which are under review.

All that being said, an application to secure building permits for the project, which is typically paralleled processed if the entitling team is planning to actually break ground, has yet to be submitted to Planning and an appeal of the project as proposed is already on the boards. We’ll keep you posted and plugged-in.

7 thoughts on “Refined Plans for Conversion of Landmarked Library, But…”
  1. The additional base of the tower to the left nods to the classical elements of the existing building. That’s good. The new tower is bland. That’s bad.

  2. an appeal of the project as proposed is already on the boards
    And what are the grounds for the appeal? (or does the Appeal not have to actually come up with a reason until it’s heard?)

    1. My layman’s reading of the appeal summary was that a group of area residents objected to Planning’s determination that the project could move forward without having to complete an environmental review as called for by CEQA, because it was covered by the Housing Element’s update from two years back and thus exempt from further review.

      This went to the S.F. Board of Supervisors earlier this week (scroll down to Hearing – Appeal of Determination of Exemption From Environmental Review — Proposed 2395 Sacramento Street Project) and the challenge to the project was effectively rejected on a 10 to 1 vote by the Board. So I guess the YIMBY’s can give themselves high-fives all around.

      But of course, this means nothing for housing as a practical matter because the developer is highly unlikely to actually begin the construction/redevelopment process in the space of the next twelve months.

  3. If there ever was a proposed construction that should NOT receive a State Density Bonus – this, is it. The new construction should not be allowed to engulf and dominate this GEM of a historic structure. The State Density Bonus is nothing but land grab. That being said – the new additions don’t need to be so conformist as shown in the rendering. (I’m referring to the lower portion of the additions) There is opportunity for something more imaginative but still respectful of the existing library building.

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