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Mayor Lee, UCSF tout planned research facility at SF General

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Mayor Ed Lee meets with UCSF staff on Monday before signing a document authorizing Zuckerberg San Francisco General Hospital to move forward with a $188 million research academic building. (Jessica Christian/S.F. Examiner)

City leaders on Monday celebrated the planned new research facility at Zuckerberg San Francisco General Hospital following approval of the project last month by the Board of Supervisors.

The lease agreement between UC San Francisco and the hospital — unanimously approved Jan. 31 by the board — allows UCSF to build a 175,000-square-foot, $200 million facility atop a parking lot outside the hospital’s former emergency room. The building will replace the space occupied by UCSF employees in seven seismically unsafe buildings at the hospital’s campus.

At a ceremonial signing of the lease at the hospital on Monday, Mayor Ed Lee touted the 150-year-old partnership between The City and UCSF.

“Patients feel that [partnership],” the mayor said. “They’ll have a doctor right on site, but when they’re not in need they’ll be across the way in a different building doing innovative research perhaps on preventing the very diseases that they’re suffering from.”

The lease was considered one of the longest and potentially most complex that San Francisco has ever entered into, the San Francisco Examiner previously reported.

As part of the negotiations, UCSF has agreed to pay The City $10 million in compensation for the disruption of 130 parking spaces now used by patients, and will also stop using 130 spaces in the hospital’s garage.

UCSF employees will instead be asked to park offsite and transported to the hospital by shuttle.

S.F. General, San Francisco’s only level 1 trauma center, opened a new, seismically sound 284-bed, 474,000-square-foot main hospital and trauma center last year, built with the help of a $887.4 million bond measure passed in 2008.

It was renamed after Facebook CEO Mark Zuckerberg after he and his wife Priscilla Chan donated $75 million toward the cost of new equipment and technology.

UCSF’s new research building is intended to complement other recent improvements to San Francisco General. UCSF-led research conducted at the campus includes neurosurgery, neurology, orthopedics, radiology and nursing, among other fields.

In addition to Health Department employees, about 800 UCSF faculty, trainees and staff work at S.F. General through patient care, teaching or conducting research.

“In recent years, city taxpayers and philanthropists have made a significant investment in ZSFG’s new main building and ambulatory care center,” UCSF Chancellor Sam Hawgood said in a statement. “Now, with the supervisors’ unanimous support of the new research building, and UCSF’s funding, UCSF and ZSFGH are in a position to continue their mission of improving the health of the people of San Francisco and beyond well into the 21st century.”

Bay City News contributed to this report.

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