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Supes voting on Sunnydale, Potrero Hill public housing rebuilds

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Potrero Terrace. (Mike Koozmin/2011 S.F. Examiner)
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San Francisco’s major undertaking to rebuild public housing sites is expected to advance this week for Sunnydale and Potrero Hill.

The proposal went before the Board of Supervisors Land Use and Transportation Committee on Monday, and on Wednesday is set to go before the board’s Budget and Finance Committee.

As previously reported by the San Francisco Examiner, the projects were widely praised the Planning Commission last year.

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SEE RELATED: Public housing in SF’s Potrero Hill, Sunnydale ready for revamp

The Sunnydale and Potrero Hill rebuilds are more expensive per unit than previous rebuild efforts under the same program, those being Hunters View and Alice Griffith. HopeSF is a program that launched in 2007 and comprises all four sites. The plan was to rebuild the dilapidated public housing units and allow market-rate housing to help fund the rebuild.

Both Alice Griffith and Hunters View were previously approved and are heading toward completion.

“Construction to replace the 267 public housing units at Hunters View with 750
affordable units began in 2010 and is scheduled to be completed in 2018,” according to a report by Budget Analyst Harvey Rose. “Construction to replace the 256 public housing units at Alice Griffith with 504 affordable units began in 2015 and is scheduled to be completed in 2021.”

The cost per bed for Alice Griffith was $312,305 per bedroom or $467 per square foot, and those costs at Hunters View were $272,214 per bedroom and $406 per square foot.

For Potrero those costs are increasing to $410,892 per bedroom or $528 per square foot, and at Sunnydale $415,992 per bedroom, or $689 per square foot.

The cost increase is due to “economies of scale” and “development costs for these
two projects are higher because construction costs in San Francisco are increasing due to increased competition from the current high volume of construction.”

The project would demolish the existing 619-units on the 38-acre Potrero Hill site and 775 units on the 50-acre public housing site in Visitacion Valley.

For Potrero, the 619 public housing units would be replaced and there would be an additional 187 units affordable to those earning 60 percent of the area median income for a total of 806 affordable units. The development would also include 817 market rate units.

For Sunnydale, there would be a replacement of the 775 public housing units and an additional 219 units affordable to those earning 60 percent of the area median income for a total of 994 affordable housing units. Market-rate housing units would total 648.

On both sites would be added new roadways, retail space and open space.

For the Potrero development the total estimated costs for the affordable housing units is $821 million, including $322 million in public financing and $498.8 million in private financing.

The Sunnydale HOPE SF Project costs $965 million, which includes $392 million in public
financing and $572. 7 million in private financing.

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