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Vacant Mission Bay Lot to Become 20-Unit Apartment Building

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A new residential building is planned for a vacant lot located directly across the street from the University of California, San Francisco (UCSF) Benioff Children’s Hospital, on the southeast corner of Tennessee and Mariposa streets. The building is being designed by San Francisco architect Riyad Ghannam, of RG-Architecture. 

The proposed development, which is undergoing an environmental review, qualifies for a Community Plan Exemption, which excludes projects that’re consistent with zoning and general plan development densities from being required to conduct a formal Environmental Impact Report (EIR), according to Don Lewis, the San Francisco Planning Department environmental planner assigned to the project. Under current plans, the former Mission Bay Motors lot will become a 16,760 square-feet, 58-foot-tall, five-story, 20-unit residential building. 

“I think the development actually helps make a community, which is wonderful. In the ten years we’ve talked about moving into this building I’m really impressed with how strong the community has become. We are partnered very tightly with the community to make sure we’re also good neighbors, so I’m excited,” said Kimberly Scurr, UCSF Benioff Children’s Hospital’s executive director.

While the building won’t offer any off-street parking, it plans to house 21 bicycle spaces on the ground floor.  The edifice would consist of 11 one-bedroom and nine two-bedroom units. Up to three of the units would be offered to families who earn 55 percent of the Area Median Income (AMI). Mission Bay’s AMI is $113,356 for those between the ages of 25 and 44, according to the San Francisco Association of Realtors. The apartment building would also include an open roof deck, several balconies, and a rear yard. 

“We anticipate our building to appeal to UCSF employees, including nurses and administrative staff, and others working in the Mission Bay and Dogpatch neighborhoods, which is a great benefit for people looking to bike and walk to work,” said Ghannam, whose firm has designed parklets located South-of-Market, the Mission District, and Noe Valley. 

The project’s developer, Soma Residential Development, aims to build the residential units with efficient, eco-friendly materials, with ground-floor townhomes that promote interaction via stoops and landscaped patios.  “This integrated design is intended to enhance the communal relationship between the building’s occupants, passing pedestrians, and neighbors. This interaction brings ‘eyes to the street,’ which benefits the neighborhood through increased security and awareness,” said Ghannam. 

Ghannam noted that at the suggestion of the Dogpatch Neighborhood Association the project’s developer is working to preserve materials from the 22nd Street Caltrain Pedestrian Bridge, which is scheduled to be removed by June 2016. Ghannam and his team plan to incorporate elements of the bridge, such as railings and timber, into the building’s façade and exterior. 

“We hope that our design will actively preserve and showcase the historically industrial nature of the Dogpatch neighborhood,” said Ghannam.

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