Voters might settle fight over condos 

click to enlarge On June 21, the group is hosting an 8 Washington referendum fundraiser for the November ballot, when it will ask voters to reject height increases along The Embarcadero. - COURTESY IMAGE
  • Courtesy Image
  • On June 21, the group is hosting an 8 Washington referendum fundraiser for the November ballot, when it will ask voters to reject height increases along The Embarcadero.

The battle over a luxury 134-condo development at 8 Washington appears to be headed to the November ballot.

The Board of Supervisors on Tuesday is expected to approve the Simon Snellgrove of Pacific Waterfront Partners development despite opposition from more left-leaning political factions and members of the Golden Gateway Tennis and Swim Club, which would be displaced. Approval, however, won’t stop opponents from fighting.

“We’re not done,” said longtime land-use attorney Sue Hestor, who is fighting the project on behalf of Friends of Golden Gateway. “Simon Snellgrove is going to have to put some more of his money up.”

On June 21, the group is hosting an 8 Washington referendum fundraiser for the November ballot, when it will ask voters to reject height increases along The Embarcadero. The 130-foot-tall development would exceed the existing 84-foot height limit.

Supporters of 8 Washington questioned the aims of the ballot effort.

“So now we are going to go to the ballot to protect a private tennis club? That would seem to be a perversion of our system,” said development spokesman PJ Johnston, adding that the proposal “has been dragged out for seven years” and has passed “fair and square” with the approving bodies.

“This is a case of NIMBYs protecting their private tennis club,” he said.

An appeal last month of the development’s environmental impact report was rejected by supervisors, with David Campos, John Avalos and board President David Chiu the only ones to support it. The development is in Chiu’s district.

Last week, Supervisor Jane Kim obtained more concessions from the developer, including low-income youth access to the pool, a decrease in parking spaces from 250 to 200 and a 50-cent surcharge on parking for area transit improvements. The deal also calls for a $11 million contribution to The City’s affordable-housing trust fund,
$2 million more than required.

jsabatini@sfexaminer.com

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