Gabrielle Lurie/Special to the S.F. ExaminerIf 33 percent of the housing is below market rate for the Giants’ Mission Rock development near AT&T Park

Gabrielle Lurie/Special to the S.F. ExaminerIf 33 percent of the housing is below market rate for the Giants’ Mission Rock development near AT&T Park

Approval for Giants’ Mission Rock hinges on housing mix, poll shows

San Franciscans are OK with new development and will even approve tall buildings near The City’s waterfront, but on one condition.

Affordability.

A recent poll showed “overwhelming support” for “decisive city action” to require new developments to have 33 percent of residential units offered at below market rate — including the Giants’ proposed makeover of parking lots and Port of San Francisco property south of AT&T Park into a new neighborhood anchored by 380-foot towers.

In fact, without such a guarantee, ambitious construction projects like the Giants’ Mission Rock might not happen at all, according to the poll.

The poll of 602 registered voters, commissioned by below-market-rate housing developer TODCO and performed by renown pollster David Binder and Associates in February, showed strong support for requiring developers to adhere to the recently approved Proposition K. It sets a below-market-rate housing goal, not a requirement, of 33 percent of all new construction.

Currently, developers are required to make 12 percent of newly constructed units below market rate or pay a fee.

Most construction projects don’t need to win a popularity contest to be built in renter-heavy San Francisco, but the Giants are in a unique position. Before the team can redevelop parking lots and Port property at Mission Rock, they will likely have to go to a ballot.

Any new waterfront development that exceeds height limits now needs voter approval thanks to last year’s Proposition B. However, a lawsuit from the California State Lands Commission over the law’s validity is pending.

The land where the Giants want to build mixed-use towers of up to 380 feet, an 8-acre park and a 2,300-space parking garage is currently zoned for zero feet.

And voters aren’t keen on the idea unless the Giants boost their below-market-rate housing commitment. Voters polled are strongly against Mission Rock — 51 percent against and 30 percent in favor — unless the Giants build 33 percent below-market-rate housing. Then, support is 45 percent in favor and 40 percent opposed.

The Giants’ final plans for Mission Rock have yet to be determined. In 2013, the team proposed to build between 650 and 1,500 residential units, 15 percent of which would be below market rate, along with office and retail space.

That now seems certain to change, as voters appear ready to greenlight tall projects “provided they’re not just sterile office buildings or purely luxury housing,” TODCO President John Elberling said.

And developers, including the Giants, “are definitely listening” to the public, Elberling said.

However, the Giants have reportedly had discussions about increasing below-market-rate housing at Mission Rock, Elberling said.

Giants spokeswoman Staci Slaughter said the organization had no comment. Other developers have had success convincing voters to approve construction projects. Forest City’s plans to redevelop the old Union Iron Works at Pier 70 received 72 percent approval in November’s election.

Bay Area NewsdevelopmentMission RockPlanningSan Francisco developmentSan Francsico Giants

Just Posted

A felled tree in Sydney G. Walton Square blocks part of a lane on Front Street following Sunday’s storm on Monday, Oct. 25, 2021. (Kevin N. Hume/The Examiner)
After the rain: What San Francisco learned from a monster storm

Widespread damage underscored The City’s susceptibility to heavy wind and rain

Plan Bay Area 2050 is an expansive plan guiding the region’s growth and development over the next three decades. The regional plan addresses progressive policy priorities like a universal basic income and a region-wide rent cap, alongside massive new spending on affordable housing and transportation infrastructure. (Shutterstock)
$1.4 trillion ‘blueprint’ would address Bay Area’s housing, transit woes

Analyzing the big ticket proposals in ‘Plan Bay Area 2050’

A felled tree in San Francisco is pictured on Fillmore Street following a major storm that produced high winds and heavy rains on Oct. 24, 2021. (Photo courtesy of Philip Ford)
Storm updates: Rainiest October day in San Francisco history

Rainfall exceeded 10 inches in parts of the Bay Area

On Sunday, California bore the brunt of what meteorologists referred to as a bomb cyclone and an atmospheric river, a convergence of storms that brought more than half a foot of rain to parts of the Bay Area, along with high winds, concerns about flash floods and the potential for heavy snow in the Sierra Nevada. Much of the Bay Area was under a flash flood watch on Sunday, with the National Weather Service warning of the potential for mudslides across the region. (NOAA via The New York Times)
Bomb cyclone, atmospheric river combine to pummel California with rain and wind

What you need to know about this historic weather event

The Department of Building Inspection, at 49 South Van Ness Ave., has been mired in scandal since since its creation by voter referendum under Proposition G in 1994. (Courtesy SF.gov)
The Department of Building Inspection, at 49 South Van Ness Ave., has been mired in scandal since its creation by voter referendum under Proposition G in 1994. (Courtesy SF.gov)
Whistleblowing hasn’t worked at the SF Dept. of Building Inspection

DBI inspectors say their boss kept them off connected builders’ projects

Most Read