Update: Tuesday’s meeting had approximately 105 participants, according to Chris Goode.
The Goode family, who has long held the property next to Potrero Del Sol Park and has invited offers from affordable housing developers, wants approval for a seven-story, 232-unit building with 28 affordable units.
“I was at the original meeting that was in person, and it doesn’t look like you’ve changed the plan at all,” said a resident named Noelle, referring to the first meeting in November, 2019.
While the project did grow from 205 units to 232, and from 22 affordable units to 28, those attending the meeting repeated earlier assertions that the building, set to be mostly market rate, would contribute to the gentrification of the Mission.
The Zoom meeting’s settings made it impossible to see the total participants, or whether there were participants still waiting to speak when the hour-and-a-half-long meeting came to an end.
During the meeting, two attendees spoke in support of the project and roughly a dozen spoke in opposition.
Another primary concern raised by attendees was the negative impact of shadows the building would cast on Potrero Del Sol’s community garden and skatepark.
Chris Goode shared images of projected shadows the building would create, based on a shadow study they commissioned. It shows that the building’s shadow would cover the community garden and a portion of the skatepark in the early morning, but the shadow decreases throughout the morning and disappears entirely by noon, according to Goode.
“We don’t want no shadows at all, at all. Absolutely none, whether it be morning, day, night, no, no shadow at all,” said Roberto Hernandez, a community organizer and executive director of Carnaval.
Hernandez said the Mission’s large number of children needed access to the sunlight, and asked Goode how much money he would want to sell the project to the city so it could become fully affordable housing.
Goode took the opportunity to reiterate a point he has made repeatedly: he does not want to be doing this to begin with.
As Goode tells it, the property-owning family began trying to improve the site in 2004, perhaps for more commercial use, but in 2008, the land was rezoned for housing instead.
Over the next eight years, he said, the Goode family reached out to the city in hopes of turning the site into a navigation center or supportive housing site. Officials showed early interest, but did not follow through.
Multiple nonprofit developers were invited to tour the property: BRIDGE Housing, Mission Economic Development Agency and Tenderloin Community Development Corporation. All three came out, but only BRIDGE made an offer to buy, but it also asked the owners to offer up a lot they did not own, Goode said.
He also had interest from market rate developers but, “they’re all contingent on the property being entitled,” Goode said. “The issue wasn’t the pricing of the property, the issue was nobody wanted to take on the entitling of this property.”
Goode told Hernandez he would absolutely “take much less money from an affordable housing developer,” but said most interested parties have wanted the property to be entitled first.
Some attendees also criticized developers for seeking multiple waivers for open space requirements, yard space requirements, building height and off-street loading requirements.
“Because we’re trying to smash the building down as much as we can to avoid shadowing, we’re asking for some modifications to the density bonus to compact those open spaces,” Goode said.
Goode explained that the building would have a rooftop garden of approximately 725 square feet, and most units in the building would have their own balconies. Commenters at the building said the balconies would be impossible to enjoy, with the car fumes coming from the nearby Highway 101 freeway.
Planning Department staff estimated in February that it would take at least a year for the San Bruno project to gain approval. In the meantime, the department will be conducting its own shadow study and completing its environmental review.