Redbeardedguy - Posted on 15 October 2010

The San Francisco Building and Planning Commissions are attempting to fast-track a new condominium construction project, slated to replace a long-dead gas station and active Green Cab parking lot on the north-east quarter of the intersection of 16th Street and South Van Ness Avenue.  This involves the Mission Plan of the Eastern Neighborhoods Plan, and is a violation of it.  Housing for the poor (30% of AMI—Area Median Income—rent paid) is a priority.  In small print, but it’s there!

Two blocks away, at 14th and Mission Streets, is Senior-only housing; the Mission Hotel, a Single Room Occupancy (SRO) building, is half a block away--with another 100 or so resident seniors.  Most of them walk with canes.  The proposed structure will have 88 condos and a 44 space garage in the basement, an increase in traffic generating more respiratory illness in a population already suffering more than its fair share—along with more traffic period, more cars to worry about crossing the street, etc.

16th Street, from So. Van Ness to Mission, frequently hosts film festivals.  The block is less gentrified than others, but that is changing too, as POOR magazine poverty scholars can see from a third story window of the Redstone Building.  New nightclubs, more noise at night, fewer of the original businesses and residents of the area around. 

Small businesses on the 2nd and 3rd floors of the Redstone Building will lose fresh air (ventilation) from their windows, which will increase the odds of catching respiratory diseases (colds, etc) for the people working in those offices.  Residents of the neighborhood on Capp, between 16th and 15th Streets, will endure 2 years of construction noise and pollution.  There is an elementary school, with a (concrete) playground behind the 16th and Mission Walgreens store, on this block of Capp Street as well, half a block from Ground Zero.  Active construction sites, with lots of large moving parts (trucks, etc) are not good for children, who do not respond to stimuli around them the same way adults do.

The Green Cab Company will likely be forced to close.  There aren’t many alternative spaces in the city available, considering all the other Eastern Neighborhoods (and other areas) construction activity going on, the fact that the (local) taxi industry is highly competitive and the awarding of Taxi Medallions is a whole other story (perhaps a novel-length work) all by itself!

Readers of these poverty scholars’ words here have an opportunity to make a difference in how the Mission Plan of the Eastern Neighborhoods Plan is dealt with.  You can contact Jeanie Poling, an Environmental Planner in San Francisco’s Planning Department.  The address is 1650 Mission Street, Suite 400, SF, CA  94103.  Contact by phone is:  415-575-9072 (fax # 415-558-6409).  Poling’s email address is: The address of the condo project is 490 So. Van Ness Avenue, the case number of it is #2010.0043E. 




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