Supervisors consider Western SoMa Plan, lots of new condos, and "the purple building"

If "the purple building" becomes condos, nightlife advocates fear clashes with throngs of 11th Street clubgoers.
Mike Koozmin/SF Newspaper Co.

The fate of the “purple building” – which has become caught up in the clash between nightlife and residential interests on the clubgoer-saturated 300-block of 11th Street – remains undecided as the Western SoMa Community Plan heads into its first hearing before the Board of Supervisors Land Use and Economic Development Committee on Monday.

As we reported in this week's paper, a unique citizen-based task force has spent the last eight years developing the plan, which will allow thousands of units of new housing – most of it along Folsom Street – to move forward once the plan gets final approval from the board. But the California Music & Culture Association and other nightlife advocates successfully amended the plan to ban new housing on that 11th Street block as the Planning Commission approved it in December.

Yet the commission also decided to grandfather in a 24-home project at 340 11th Street, the so-called purple building, which nightlife advocates say would put those new residents on a collision course with Slim's, DNA Lounge, and other big nightclubs on that busy block. As we went to press, both sides and District 6 Sup. Jane Kim were all hopeful that a compromise was imminent, likely involving switching from residential to office.

But with just days to go before that hearing, building owner Tony Lo still hasn't decided whether to make the change or fight it out in front of the supervisors. His architect John Goldman – whose residential design for the site was placed on hold by the city since shortly after he submitted it in 2005 – had hoped to hear by now but he's still waiting for Lo to make the call.

“Based on my analysis, it looks feasible to change to offices if you want to do it, and I mean feasible financially and architecturally and planning-wise,” Goldman today told the Guardian, referring to what he told Lo.

Meanwhile, Western SoMa Task Force Chair Jim Meko – who has not been supportive of tweaking the plan after all the work he oversaw – yesterday sent out an email blast to stakeholders and supporters urging them to attend Monday's hearing and show support for the plan.

“You don't often get a chance to participate in making decisions about your own neighborhood from start to finish. Some special interest groups are expected to come out of the woodwork to take pot shots at the Plan so the hundreds of participants in this process need to make their voices heard. Your testimony at the hearing next week will make all the difference,” Meko wrote.

The hearing starts at 10am in board chambers in City Hall. This item might have been heard later in the day considering the agenda opens with a continuation of the controversial condo lottery bypass legislation, on which Board President David Chiu and others have been trying to forge a compromise between tenant advocates and homeowner groups. But committee Chair Scott Wiener just told us that item “will be continued. No compromise yet.”


because the voters have decided that my activities are more worthy and good for society than your activities.

Posted by anon on Feb. 23, 2013 @ 6:13 pm

Renters subsidize homeowners who finance the purchase of real estate. Citizens who pay income tax (53%) subsidize the 47% who don't. People who pay more than 13% in federal income tax subsidize Mitt Romney. The simple solution would be to have everyone pay income tax, and have everyone pay the same % of their income in income tax, regardless of the source.

Posted by Richmondman on Feb. 25, 2013 @ 2:25 pm

You sure bore the rest of us.

Posted by anon on Feb. 23, 2013 @ 6:16 pm

Why am I not surprised.

I didn't write it or necesarily agree with every sentence, but one advantage to passing reading comprehension 1A (a class you likely failed) is the ability to have the patience to read through thoughtful writing and understanding the points being offered. The poster did an excellent job, unlike your always predictable and snarky outrigtht lies.

Let's hope they post more often and that you finally make some friends so you can experience what a joyful life can be like without the need for tearing down other people to make yourself feel better about your lonely and bitter life.

Posted by Guest on Feb. 23, 2013 @ 6:50 pm

Facts are boring.

Posted by marcos on Feb. 23, 2013 @ 9:19 pm

Anon is pulling some really stupid comments out of thin air, sounding spent and desperate with the lies that keep piling up. Of course a tax write-off is a subsidy, financed through the tax system rather than a direct payment.

For all of anon's blinding idiocy posts lately you'd think Plan C, SPUR and the Chamber of Commerce would find someone a bit fresher and less obvious about their misrepresentations and outright lies. Similar to the many trolls posting for team "Not-Progressive," after so many hundreds of posts the novelty wears off and all we're left with is a rambling troll who needs a better job, more friends, or a new hobby to fill up the day since their incessant posts here sure don't do them, or us, any favors.

Anon is likely trying to divert attention away from the fact that real estate speculators and landlords get hundreds of billions of tax subsidies every year from their government patrons, including Democrats who are huge friends to landlord overlords. Take away their interest deductions, and their phony depreciation deductions, and their property tax write-offs, and their very low capital gain tax rates and tax-freee exchanges, and they would squeal louder than a bunch of trapped rats on a sinking ship watching their paper profits disappear into the ether.

Of course we could sure those multi-billion dollar annual subsides given to landlords and speculators about now to build appropriate housing in appropriate locations for the millions of families who desperately just want a stable roof over their head and are not looking for a path to real estate riches. The writers at the Bay Guardian don't seem to understand that the war against tenants and working people starts at the top by government politicians who make the rules and direct these billlion dollar subsidies to their favored constituents, the landlords, speculators, and developers.

The lackeys like anon and SPUR and the Chamber are just the errand boys to make sure the lower and middle income groups stay off-balance and continue to pay 40% of their income in various taxes and another 40% for housing costs. The jury is still out on whether the SFBG writers are part of the lackey group or if their brains have lost large pieces of working grey matter over the years and they just can't quite see the real estate system for what it really is - pure state socialism favoring the wealthy landlord, developer, and speculator groups while driving lower and middle income working people further into the ground. Maybe that’s why there are so many sex and drug ads in the Bay Guardian so the little people have some hedonic diversions to keep them from thinking about the wretched real estate system the government has created that destroys communities and deliberately hurts families.

Posted by Guest on Feb. 23, 2013 @ 6:20 pm

"You really, truly hate San Francisco and San Franciscans."

If you move to Portland, Marcos, that only proves that you too "really, truly hate San Francisco and San Franciscans".

Posted by Demented, Yet Terribly, Terribly, Persistent on Feb. 23, 2013 @ 11:29 am

To paraphrase Ronald Reagan, it is not so much that I'd be leaving San Francisco, more like San Francisco had left me.

Posted by marcos on Feb. 23, 2013 @ 11:41 am

"it is not so much that I'd be leaving San Francisco, more like San Francisco had left me."

And so your response is to move to white, white, white, whitebread Portland, which is completely devoid of rent control and most of the other progressive measures you love so much?

If you truly cherish "diversity", move to Oakland.

Posted by Demented, Yet Terribly, Terribly, Persistent on Feb. 23, 2013 @ 11:56 am

The choices are all so impoverished.

Posted by marcos on Feb. 23, 2013 @ 1:48 pm

than it does about residential options.

Those who run away from one place, typically run all their lives.

Posted by anon on Feb. 23, 2013 @ 1:57 pm

You're a turing test, no?

Posted by marcos on Feb. 23, 2013 @ 2:56 pm
Posted by anon on Feb. 23, 2013 @ 3:08 pm

it good if there was some money in it for you.

Every single day.

Posted by Eddie on Feb. 23, 2013 @ 3:30 pm

You also contributed to our downpayment!

Posted by marcos on Feb. 23, 2013 @ 6:15 pm

Let alone handed you a subsidy

Posted by anon on Feb. 24, 2013 @ 9:00 am

our income or financial situation.

But you like to boast about your riches, so according to you, you have real estate equity worth $2M. In a high value location like SF, that ain't shit for someone whose reason for being is to make money and gain "fiscal power."

I'm on to you. You are a frustrated person who aspires to be rich, but can't do it through real work like income from a profession, so you turned to the easiest unskilled way, real estate speculation. And at that, you are a bottom feeder. Plus you get off on holding power over people like your "no good" tenants who always face your Ellis threat or "encouragement" to move on.

I bet you don't go onto or whatever it's called and brag about your $2M in SF Real Estate equity. They'd wouldn't let you into their club, but would hold you in derision, which is where most readers here hold you as well.

Posted by Eddie on Feb. 24, 2013 @ 10:00 am

But then if I had never managed to escape a rent-controlled prison, I'd be bitter too.

But you are right about one thing. Building wealth simply by owning a home and sitting on your ass for a couple of decades sure beats the 9 to 5 grind you will have to do until you drop.

Posted by anon on Feb. 24, 2013 @ 10:12 am

I'm just sick of your constant presence polluting what might be a fine online venue for discussing local issues.

Just remember, the bubble is always biggest before it bursts.

By the way, your assumptions about me are way off.

Posted by Eddie on Feb. 24, 2013 @ 10:29 am

demonstrates the intolerance to others that you do to anyone here who doesn't agree with you.

Posted by anon on Feb. 24, 2013 @ 11:25 am

You rode a couple of parasitic waves, like rent control and payoffs and, even then, all you've got is 16th and Mission.

Truth is, SF never was what you thought it would be. You were really just running away from yourself, and that never works in the end.

People like you add nothing to the city, and lilly-white Portland can have you.

Posted by anon on Feb. 23, 2013 @ 12:11 pm

"People like you add nothing to the city, and lilly-white Portland can have you."

Please don't encourage him - I'm planning on buying a house in Portland, and I don't want to have to bid against Marcos, with his ill-gotten gains from San Francisco real estate speculation.

It is my financial interest that Marcos not move to Portland, just as it is in Marcos' financial interest to discourage the construction of new housing in San Francisco.

Nobody likes competition.

Posted by Demented, Yet Terribly, Terribly, Persistent on Feb. 23, 2013 @ 12:41 pm

Like all NIMBY housing activists, marcos want to deny opportunity to others, as long as he has his already.

Posted by anon on Feb. 23, 2013 @ 1:00 pm

At some point, every tenant has paid the highest rent in his or her building. We all paid current market rates when we moved in, just as all landowners paid market rates when they bought, even if current prices would now be higher.
And since rent stabilization is part of the marketplace here, it is and should be factored into one's financial (not fiscal!) power to live here. People certainly factor in Prop 13 when they decide to buy.

They also factor in the limited power of banks to jack up mortgage debt when prices appreciate. The government regulates the bank's "property rights'' by treating mortgage holders as owners even if they haven't paid off more than 50 percent of their principal. When prices soared, why shouldn't the creditors (the primary owners) have been able to claim their percentage of the gains and tack them onto the debt? Government interference in favor of debtors prevents it. A free market, devoid of mortgage supports, would allow it.

Over the last six years, government has interfered even more in that relationship, allowing homeowners to skirt their obligations under exraordinarily favorable -- dare I say "parasitic''? -- arrangements. If rent-controlled tenants don't pay their rent, there will be no eviction moratorium or rent modification program to undermine the original contract. Government only doubles down on its protection of property owners.

Posted by Guest on Feb. 23, 2013 @ 4:14 pm

If you want security, buy a home in SF, or move somewhere that you can afford to buy.

Posted by anon on Feb. 24, 2013 @ 8:59 am

Although after years of living in San Francisco, I can appreciate why you would look forward to living in a much, much less diverse place.

The Chris Daly strategy.

Posted by Demented, Yet Terribly, Terribly, Persistent on Feb. 23, 2013 @ 11:49 am

It is all because I am afraid of the knee grows.

Posted by marcos on Feb. 23, 2013 @ 1:49 pm

Prop 8, and of course it is no coincidence that the Castro is the whitest neighborhood in SF.

Your kind and their kind never did get on, and the fact that you both mostly vote for the same party just goes to show how tenuous the coalition of the self-absorbed victims really is.

Posted by anon on Feb. 23, 2013 @ 1:59 pm

There aren't gay black people? Wealthy black people don't want to live in the Castro? Gay people don't like black people? Black people don't like gay people? There is housing discrimination even in liberal San Francisco? You don't like black people? You don't like gay people? You don't like gay black people (especially lesbians)? The answer to the last one is clear from your previous comments.

Posted by Eddie on Feb. 23, 2013 @ 2:22 pm

Most blacks don't appear to feel that they have a lot in common with liberal white gays, which is why they voted down gay marriage.

If you don't like that, take it up with them.

Posted by anon on Feb. 23, 2013 @ 2:54 pm

This one isn't particularly hard to figure out.

Blacks vote 85 - 95% Democrat; gays vote 75 - 80% Democrat.

Its the old divide and conquer ploy.

Would reactionary rhetoricians note that *Mormons* were presumably the *most* culpable for financing Prop 8's narrow victory? Nope.

Would they want anybody to focus on the high percentages of regular churchgoers who decided to deprive gays of matrimonial bliss? Ahh, no.

Would they advertise that 70% of *Republicans* voted against full civil rights for gays? Not on your life.

70% of Repugs voted against gays -- and the real number for Blacks is 58%, not 70 -- so what's this about again? (It's Big Troll Trope #20, that's what!)

Posted by lillipublicans on Feb. 23, 2013 @ 8:12 pm

reported at the time, including by CNN. In any event, it was a clear majority and it was the blacks who tipped Prop 8 over the 50% mark, ensuring it's victory.

Just because both blacks and gays vote for Dem's does not mean that they are natural allies. Quite the opposite, in fact, which is a part of why the Dem alliance is so shakey.

Posted by anon on Feb. 24, 2013 @ 8:58 am

Yet another time conventional wisdom was proven wrong. Clearly you paid no attention to the link provided. And no, if you do the math, blacks did not tip Prop 8 over the 50% mark. Even if it was 70%, which it wasn't, the black vote wouldn't have been the deciding factor. Basic math here, onan.

Posted by Greg on Feb. 24, 2013 @ 9:13 am

assert that a particular voting bloc that typically votes homogeneously, like blacks, made the difference. As of course they also did with Obama. If the black vote was excluded, we'd have had McCain and Romney as Prez.

So the gays better not piss off the blacks any more than already.

Posted by anon on Feb. 24, 2013 @ 10:09 am

were excluded, we'd have a nice place to discuss issues.

A race baiter who posts homophobic comments would appear to be overcompensating for his real desires. J. Edgar Hoover comes to mind.

Posted by Eddie on Feb. 24, 2013 @ 10:39 am
Posted by anon on Feb. 24, 2013 @ 10:59 am

You aren't discussing. You are destroying the comment pages for people of all viewpoints.

I suppose that's your goal.

Posted by Eddie on Feb. 24, 2013 @ 3:41 pm
Posted by Guest on Feb. 24, 2013 @ 4:52 pm

Automatic gainsaying with resort to ad hominem is what is destroying this forum.

Posted by marcos on Feb. 24, 2013 @ 5:37 pm

Anon doesn't talk ideas, only trash talking to make people feel bad because they're going to be evicted if they live in a smaller building and anon will make lots of profits when that happens. Ideas don't involve personalities or degrading people, which are anon's big claims to fame here.

There's a lot of gloating in anon's posts, which usually means compensating for something lacking. If it's true he's only worth $2 million after all his bragging, then maybe that's why anon slums around on the SFBG chatboard since $2 mil is far, far down the list of economic accomplishments by a hundred thousand or two of other SF residents.

Eddie, you're too good of a poster here to waste time taking anon's bait, no matter how vile the post. There's nothing more satisfying than watching one of the resident trolls write something that gets zero response. After a few weeks of that treatment, I suspect anon, Lucretia, and others will move on elsewhere where they can find someone else to satisify some pathetic need for attention, even if it's negative attention.

Posted by Guest on Feb. 24, 2013 @ 8:27 pm

"We" have had enough of anon.

Posted by marcos on Feb. 24, 2013 @ 8:59 pm

Actually the whitest 'neighborhood' in SF is the homeless population in GG park, over %90.

Posted by pete moss on Feb. 24, 2013 @ 10:02 am

That's been the case for a couple of decades now.

Posted by anon on Feb. 24, 2013 @ 10:09 am

So put your money where your mouth is and move to Oakland, Marcos.

The weather there is a hell of a lot better than Portland, and you can enjoy the diversity that you so, so, cherish.

Posted by Demented, Yet Terribly, Terribly, Persistent on Feb. 23, 2013 @ 4:13 pm

Non sequitir. Are you a Turing test?

Posted by marcos on Feb. 23, 2013 @ 11:36 pm

Once west SOMA was severed from the overall SOMA re-zoning effort and the numerous politically connected busy-bodies were put in charge, it was fairly evident not much new housing would get added to the area. The usual cranks and crack-pots held their meetings for years, they conducted numerous dog and pony shows along the way, they argued and beat their chests when more sober, reasonable people tried to speak up against certain elements of the plan including adding much more housing, and in the end the supes won't consider major changes to the "plan" since it was a done deal as soon as the process started.

One day the busy-bodies, cranks, and crack-pots will be gone and the area can be opened up again for more thoughtful planning. There are plenty of other areas in the city zoned for housing the city can get busy building, leaving the west SOMA area to be more thoughtfully developed 10 or 15 years from now. The land speculators in the area that were hoping to build housing highrises will have to cool their heels until then. Ironically, when the area does get rezoned for more housing the height limits allowed will be closer to 20 stories instead of the current 6-8 stories allowed in many parts of east SOMA, so their speculation will still pay off quite handsomely after the long wait.

Posted by Guest on Feb. 23, 2013 @ 10:02 pm

Spin that loss!

Posted by marcos on Feb. 23, 2013 @ 10:36 pm

developments we see in many cities are mixed-use, rather than single-use, which was the old style.

The only true determinant of whether there should be housing there is if people will buy the homes. If they will, then we should build what they will buy.

Posted by anon on Feb. 24, 2013 @ 10:07 am

We have given you ample opportunity for you to conquer your idiocy, but clearly your idiocy has won.

Posted by marcos on Feb. 24, 2013 @ 6:59 pm

You're exactly the same poster. Since you can't figure that out says a lot.

And drop the royal "we." Use "I" statements since that's the only way you see and interact with the world. Obviously no one wants you on their team or you wouldn't be posting here everyday; you'd be meeting and working with people on productive projects rather than spending worthless time here spouting mostly snark and ad hominem attacks. And even if you were working on projects with people, I sincerely doubt they'd let you speak for their team since your words are mostly divisive, angry, and hateful, hardly the language to build up a group or create alliances with others.

Posted by Guest on Feb. 24, 2013 @ 8:04 pm