Hugo Hotel demolition plans starting to take shape

A demolition team will be sought early next year to tear down the Hugo Hotel, an iconic vacant building at Sixth and Howard streets that had furniture attached to its exterior walls in the 1990s by an artist.

After hearing an eminent domain case, the San Francisco Superior Court recently ordered the owners to sell the blighted building to the San Francisco Redevelopment Agency for $4.6 million.

Redevelopment Agency Executive Director Fred Blackwell told commissioners during a public meeting Tuesday that the agency plans to “aggressively pursue demolition” of the hotel and seek bids from demolition crews early next year.

The fire-damaged building, which has not yet been purchased by the agency, is expected to be torn down and replaced with a new building filled with affordable housing units.

Commission President Ramon Romero joked that demolition of the building is underway.

“It’s already being demolished by Mother Nature,” Romero said during the hearing.

The hotel is wrapped in graffiti-covered boards in a section of the South of Market neighborhood that the agency is attempting to rehabilitate.

 

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