Earlier this month, San Francisco's Planning Commission overwhelmingly approved the construction of a new, 7-story building at Market and 14th Streets. The building will include 62 residential apartment units and will take advantage of the location's proximity to public transportation by offering parking for bicycles but not vehicles.
The complex will be on the site of the former Home Restaurant, which closed in 2011 after declaring bankruptcy. It has taken 5 years for the future of this unused parcel to be decided upon. The parcel is an odd triangular shape and includes challenging slopes but city planners felt it would benefit from substantial development, especially because of the 5 Muni lines all within a block of the property.
“This is an important corner, as you kind of enter into the Castro at two major intersections,” stated Commissioner Rich Hillis.
Enter Brian Spiers Development, the San Francisco-based real estate firm that is spearheading the mixed use complex that includes 62 residential units and ground-level retail. Though the building's proposed design underwent some reworking of the exterior as well as the floor plan of the retail space, the planners unanimously decided to approve Spier's project.
“To those who were critical of the building, one group said it wasn’t dramatic enough…others said it didn’t fit in with the Victorians…but I think it strikes a good balance,” said Commissioner Michael Antonini.
Because of the vicinity to multiple Muni lines all within a one block radius, the building will not include any parking areas for motorized vehicles. Instead, it will offer bicycle parking to encourage residents to take advantage of public transportation.
Commission President Rodney Fong noted that San Francisco needs new housing immediately, and further delaying this project could prevent the construction of new homes.