What is the project plan so far?
The land has been purchased by developers with plans to start construction in 2022/2023.
As of June 2022, the SF city planning office is in process for approving applications for the construction of a 12-13 story, 400+ unit condo complex, with 30% (120) "affordable" units (370 at market rate). The ground level is intended for commercial retail. The height of the building will be 125 feet, which is 8 times taller than almost every other building in the neighborhood. And doesn't include extensions above that height for cooling, elevator shafts, etc.
This development is proposed for the block at 2700 Sloat Blvd., currently occupied by the Sloat Garden Center. If this project is approved, Sloat Garden Center will be demolished and the employees at this site, will lose their jobs.
How did this happen?
Historically western San Francisco has been protected from rapid development, with height restrictions topping off at 40' (two to three stories). In 2018, former District 4 Supervisor Katy Tang worked alongside the Planning Dept. to create the program HOME-SF. This program allows developers to build over height and density limits if they provide a percentage of affordable housing.
Developers and the City are using this program to appear that they are providing housing for lower income and blue collar people. But there is no definition of affordable, which means that when they price their units "under market value" there is no predetermined percentage or range. Affordability is influenced by market value and determined by the developer. How does this balance out? IT DOESN'T. It's a loophole that provides PR for developers and city planners, while allowing backdoor profits for developers. It changes the cityscape, housing options, and leaves neighborhoods with largely vacant buildings.
For example, The Westerly complex sits in the next block to the west at 2800 Sloat Blvd. Completed in 2018 with 56 units they have only sold 32 (as of April 2022), although exact numbers are hard to come by. The commercial space on the ground floor is still vacant. Affordable units are vacant. The site is becoming dilapidated and is plastered with large WARNING NO TRESPASSING signs.
With the same basic design, 2700 Sloat will be a bigger failure dominating the skyline and creating urban blight. The developers have already tried to entice local businesses to sign-on to rent commercial space at 2700, but it is too expensive. Meaning that the only type of retailer that will be able to afford the spaces are likely big box chains. This would deeply impact the culture and vitality of locally owned neighborhood businesses.
Who is behind it?
The developers of 2700 Sloat have been identified as Tom and Yajun Hu. The development company is listed as 2700 Sloat Holding LLC in Reno, NV. It's unknown who the parent company actually is. They have employed a local PR firm based in SF to represent them and claim they are a local company. The architecture firm is from Michigan, which created this so obviously out of touch design.
How can we stop it?
1- Petition SF Planning Department to rescind current permits for 2700 Sloat.
2- Insist the developers scrap the current proposal and create a design that is harmonious with the laid back coastal vibe of the Sunset / Parkside, providing housing and a benefit to the community.
3- Insist Supervisor Mar and the Board of Supervisors reinstate height restrictions on new developments in the Outer Sunset and Outer Parkside, topping off at 75' (5 to 6 stories).