Courtesy of MEDA. The proposed project at 2205 Mission St., which proposed teacher housing at the last Housing Stability Fund Oversight Board proposal pitch.

The long-abandoned, but historic one-story building at 18th and Mission streets will become affordable housing reserved for teachers, and hopes to get a financial boost by being chosen among a half-dozen such projects to receive $32 million in newly-released city funds. 

San Francisco’s housing office last Friday closed applications for nonprofit developers hoping to use city money to build teacher housing across the city. 

The Mission Economic Development Agency, which in 2017 bought the deteriorating building on 2205 Mission St. near 18th Street, is one of seven applicants in the running for the funds. 

Built after the 1906 earthquake in a style known as Streamline Moderne, the facade will remain because of its historic designation, but the nonprofit aims to turn it into a nine-story building with some 63 affordable condos reserved for teachers. It will also have  a “community serving space” on the first and second floors. A permit for construction was filed in 2021. 

At least two projects will be chosen to divide the $32 million, and seven organizations threw their hats in the ring, according to Anne Stanley, the spokesperson for the Mayor’s Office of Housing and Community Development. 

The housing office only considers reputed developers who have a site and plan in mind to build teacher housing, and who prove they need the money. Projects that receive the funding will be announced in June.

MEDA said it would use the funds to develop more “deeply-affordable” units, or units reserved for lower-income tenants, and more two and three-bedroom units for families. 

“We continue to move forward with the project and finalize our financing, targeting construction to start in the fall 2023,” said MEDA’s spokesperson, Christina Tetreault, who confirmed the organization’s application.

Stanley said that the mayor’s office of housing could not immediately share the other five contenders, nor their plans. 

There have been three other sites where teacher housing has already been proposed in San Francisco. Previously, the San Francisco School District asked developers to develop three sites for educators, including one at Seventh Avenue and Lawton Street, one at 20 Cook St. and a Bayview site at 200 Middle Point Rd. Seven developers applied, but the process was delayed by the pandemic, the district said at the time.

Building teacher housing has been top of mind, especially after the city’s first teacher housing project broke ground last September in the Outer Sunset.  Shirley Chisholm Village will be a 135-unit development with  nonprofit space on the ground-floor. Construction there is scheduled to finish by next year. 


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REPORTER. Annika Hom is our inequality reporter through our partnership with Report for America. Annika was born and raised in the Bay Area. She previously interned at SF Weekly and the Boston Globe where she focused on local news and immigration. She is a proud Chinese and Filipina American. She has a twin brother that (contrary to soap opera tropes) is not evil.

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  1. Technically it wasn’t built in Streamline moderne; the post-earthquake storefront was a conventional wooden structure. They sold stoves. It was retrofitted with in Deco Moderne style (glass paneling in bright colors, rounded corner, neon clock) as as part of a business upgrade demonstration project during the early years of the Depression. I think Elizabeth Creely blogged about this several years ago.

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  2. All great questions.
    35 mil? – 2550 Irving penciled out at 1.8 million a unit.
    At least that’s what Tenderloin Neighborhood Development Corporation is gunning for.

    Since these are condos it’s assumed they will be owner occupied.
    Once ownership is acquired it doesn’t really matter if the resident keeps working as a “teacher”.
    Still kinda weird to segregate teachers in their own special enclave.

    Bottom line – for what it costs to build (time and money) “affordable” housing – one can just acquire an existing market rate condo at a much cheaper price and flip it around to lucky lottery winners.

    A million bucks (or even $750,000) will still get you a pretty nice condo in this town.
    And don’t worry, the non-profits will figure out how to get a slice of the market rate to affordable switcheroo. One always has to think of their best interests first.

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  3. What does it mean that they want to use these funds to make units for teachers more deeply affordable? Is the intention to house other non-teaching educational staff? Are the teachers limited to SFUSD teaching staff or can SFSU or Academy of Art University professors enter the lottery?

    For 63 units, we’re looking at $35m or so to build out. Has the rest of the project been funded and this is just icing on the cake or are these dollars required to begin construction?

    Is 1979 Mission in the running for teacher housing dollars since it is adjacent to an elementary school?

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  4. How does teacher housing work? Do you have to move out if you quit working for SFUSD? Thinking about the hideous situation with their payment system and general complaints from teachers, seems a little scary to tie your entire family’s housing to a job with a poor track record of treating their employees well. But I suppose there are enough committed teachers to fill a few buildings.

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