New Mission Housing Project to Offer Affordable Housing

Housing Project

A new proposed housing complex in the Mission District will bring affordable apartments to the area in exchange for leniency in environmental regulation reviews of the development. The developers of the 130-unit family housing project plan to be the first company in San Francisco to take advantage of a new law that allows builders to bypass long and pricey environmental analysis if they agree to provide affordable housing options. Under the state law, developers in San Francisco must commit to providing a minimum of 50 percent of the total units at a reduced rate. The percentage commitment varies in each community and is dependent on how much housing that area produces.

Last week, a proposal was submitted jointly by the Mission Economic Development Agency (MEDA) and the Tenderloin Neighborhood Development Corporation to develop at the proposed location of 681 Florida Street. By invoking Senate Bill 35 (SB35), the builders will be allowed to reduce the review process on the development by six months to a year. Assuming the City Planning Department determines that this proposed development qualifies for the exemption, the city will have 60 days to reviews the specs and approve the building process. In addition to the affordable housing units, the complex will also include a 9,000-square-foot community arts center and will provide valuable social services in an effort to assist struggling residents.

If all goes as planned, this development will be the third project in the state to take advantage of the new legislation. Last month, Blake Griggs Properties of Danville invoked the law for its proposed 260-unit building on a parking lot across the street from the historic Spenger’s Fresh Fish Grotto in West Berkely. The second project to invoke the priviledge is a proposal to build a 2,400-unit residential complex in the shadow of Apple's new corporate headquarters in Cupertino. The development will replace the dying Vallco Mall complex and will add much needed residential housing to the booming area.

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