SF Giants’ eye 33% below-market-rate housing for development site near AT&T Park

The San Francisco Giants intend to transform a 28-acre site just south of AT&T Park along the waterfront into a mixed-use development that includes below-market-rate housing, parks and retail space, team officials announced Tuesday.

The Mission Rock measure was submitted to the City Attorney’s Office on Tuesday, and it needs 9,702 signatures before July 6 to qualify for the November ballot. The initiative must go before voters because of Proposition B, a measure passed last year that requires voter approval for waterfront height-limit increases.

The proposal would turn the space currently used as a game-day parking lot into about 1,500 new rental apartments, 33 percent of which would be offered at below market rate. Eight acres of open space, including a waterfront park, and an expanded home for Anchor Brewing Co. are also proposed.

“The Mission Rock initiative is the culmination of eight years of extensive neighborhood outreach and community planning to transform this surface parking lot into an asset for the community,” Larry Baer, Giants president and CEO, said in a statement.

Also in the mix is garage parking and an expanded light-rail connection to downtown that is currently under construction.

While new buildings are proposed for just 10 acres of the 28-acre site, height limits range from 90 to 190 feet for office and retail uses, and 120 to 240 feet for housing. The site is currently zoned as open space, meaning the height limit is zero feet.

The plan has already gained the support of state Sen. Mark Leno, D-San Francisco, and former state Sen. John Burton. Neighborhood leaders on board include Katy Liddell, president of the South Beach, Rincon Hill, Mission Bay Neighborhood Association; Delancey Street Foundation President Mimi Silbert; SFMade President Kate Sofis; and Corinne Woods, chair of the Mission Bay Citizens Advisory Committee.

The project has to go to the ballot even though the validity of Prop. B remains tangled in a lawsuit by the California State Lands Commission. It asserts the measure is illegal because while the waterfront is managed by The City’s Port Commission, the state Legislature retains ultimate authority over the property per the Burton Act of 1968.

In March, a San Francisco Superior Court judge allowed the lawsuit to go forward after the City’s Attorney Office, which contends the measure is legal, sought to have it thrown out. Both sides are due back in court May 20 for a status hearing.

Meanwhile, Prop. B remains in effect.

A nearby mixed-use development led by Forest City that combines housing, retail, office and open space on more than a third of a 28-acre site at Pier 70 in Dogpatch was approved by voters last November.

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