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Could the city buy out the Monster in the Mission?


Now that the project is in trouble, some say it’s time to use city money to turn the 16th and Mission site into affordable housing

Bianca Starr tells the crowd that activists have made this moment possible
Bianca Starr tells the crowd that activists have made this moment possible

By Tim Redmond

AUGUST 24, 2015 – A good-sized crowd gathered at noon today at 16th and Mission, where a long series of rallies have protested the construction of a luxury housing project above the BART plaza. But today’s event was in part a celebration: The developer and the landowner are in a legal dispute that could scuttle the project – and activists hope the city can step in and buy the land for affordable housing.

It’s not clear at this point just how much trouble the project is in – but court fights tend to take a long time, and the developer has already poured millions into moving this thing forward.

I ran into Larry Del Carlo, who is working with Maximus, at the event, and he told me he didn’t know anything new. “It looks like it’s going to court, that’s all I can say,” he told me.

Bianca Starr, parent of a child at nearby Marshall Elementary school, told the crowd that the activists who have fought the project can take credit for the fact that it hasn’t already broken ground. “This wouldn’t have happened without every single march, every single action,” she said.

Several speakers called on the city to buy the land. When activists took over a Maximus community meeting and demanded that the site be used for 100 percent affordable housing, developer representatives said that was simply impossible: There’s not enough profit in building lower-cost housing.

But now that the project is in legal limbo, there’s an actual chance that the community’s demand could move forward. Sup. David Campos, who was on the scene, told me that not only is there money in the November affordable housing bond for the Mission, “we set aside $25 million in this budget for site acquisition.”

He said that he thinks “the city should be in the process of identifying possible lots” for affordable housing, and “the city should pursue this piece of land.”

Now: A year ago, that wouldn’t have been possible, because Maximus was rolling out its private-development plans. But the developer has missed a deadline to actually buy the land from the current owners, the Jang family.

And because of all the protests over the project, and the possibility for a long drawn-out fight not just in the courts but then at City Hall, there might be an opening for the city to step in.

So plenty to celebrate on a sunny August day in the Mission. Meanwhile, the other huge Mission project — the Beast on Bryant — comes up before the City Planning Commission Sept. 10.


Tim Redmond
Tim Redmond has been a political and investigative reporter in San Francisco for more than 30 years. He spent much of that time as executive editor of the Bay Guardian. He is the founder of 48hills.


  1. That’s just not true. I’m looking at Redfin sales records for the last 6 months for sales that closed under $600k in those three neighborhoods and there are well over 100 single family houses that traded for under $600k.

  2. I know lots of people who are in tech who are part of the local art music and bar scenes. You might even know some of them too. Ever heard of Jamie Zawinski?

  3. You could buy property here if it was important enough to you. How old are you?

    Do a tour in the military, use the VA Loan to buy something. Get a job with SFPD, they start at $80k/yr and go to $110k/yr after you make detective. Marry someone else with a job and you could even get a nice place.

  4. “Sam” is the same troll as “Siddle.” His commentary is repetitive and monotonous, and it doesn’t take long to figure out it’s the same dude. He periodically changes his handle once people catch on and start to tune out anything he says.

  5. True, but will San Francisco be worth living in when it’s the cultural equivalent of Walnut Creek? I say no. A city needs rich people, it needs landlords, but it also needs cultural producers to make it relevant and an enjoyable place to live.

  6. Well I’m learning about investments and taking my money and long term situation more seriously than I used to. Maybe it’s time for you to learn something about the humanities. Money is important, but it’s not what makes life worth living. If you haven’t internalized that then I’m not sure you’re actually the rich one in this conversation.

  7. “Do you pay your own way? That matters far more.”
    Do YOU, Sam? You’ve said that you’re a landlord. That means your tenants are paying your way.

  8. Sure, we all die. But I will never have to leave SF because somebody else decides to take back their property and not rent it out any more.

    Rent control is fine as long as you get lucky.

  9. Thanks Dad. We don’t have any control over anything and we’re all going to the same place. It doesn’t matter what you do for a living or how much money you have. There is no real security.

  10. There are more artists in SF than you can throw a stick at. WE don’t need more artists. We need more people who will add to the taxbase and not need services, care, welfare, subsidies and handouts.

  11. That’s a nice story and it’s too bad they didn’t take a longer-term view. But the way the city is now, I’m afraid you don’t get any points for having been here a long time. The city needs to give priority to the people whose skills and productivity it needs. And not base public policy on nostalgia or the desire to create a theme park for the weird

  12. As long as you understand that you have no real long-term security because you have chosen to rely on the generosity of strangers, then that’s fine.

    Maybe you will get to stay here and maybe not. But you no longer have any control over that

  13. By cool I mean cultural producers. We do a lot of work for free and work second jobs to pay our own way. If you want to live in a world without artists and musicians well that’s not a world I want to live in. The reality is that we’re doing work that most of the world just takes for granted and doesn’t even pay for. Any subsidy I do get is totally earned.

  14. My Great Uncle owned what is now Village Market on 8th and California. They had it in the 30’s and 40’s but I’m not sure when they sold it. I don’t even want to check the value because I know it will make me angry. Our family name is still in the tiling when you walk into the store.

  15. If I receive a legal eviction what am I going to do about it? Barricade myself inside the apartment? No I’ll challenge it within the context of the law and if that fails take a payout and go dream another dream. As far as property owners subsidizing me, the voters decided that’s how they wanted to handle housing in the city. No one forced the current owners of this property to buy this building. They could have invested in alfalfa futures or wind power. The owners are long term Chinese residents who invest in multi-generational passive income streams. They know what they’re doing and are fine with it.

    Again, you can figure out what I’ve done relatively easily but I’m not interested in being put in a position of proving my right to be here. I’m here unless and until I’m not.

  16. I know what you mean. My mom’s stepdad’s step-aunt died in 1971 and left her a house on Shotwell which they sold for about $20K, I’m guessing. I checked Zillow and it’s now worth $1.2 million.

  17. I don’t care who is “cool” because I am not 16 years old.

    Do you pay your own way? That matters far more.

  18. A certain baseline level of turnover in the city enables more new blood to move here and keeps the city dynamic.

    SF is not a theme park for those who came here earlier because they didn’t want to grow up. We are done with the Peter Pan people who do not pay their way

  19. So you accept that if you receive a legal eviction attempt that you will have to leave?

    And that the rent control that you rely on also relies on a property owner willing to subsidize you forever?

    I don’t care how long you have been here. What have you done for us recently?

  20. We should absolutely build, but not by evicting existing people. We should build where there is currently nothing, or nothing of much importance like down the 3rd street corridor. I’m glad they built that stuff in Mission Bay just so it takes pressure off of evicting people from existing housing stock. But let’s not pretend those condos look like San Francisco. They’re totally soulless and architecturally insignificant. They could be in any city anywhere in the world. They’re also in no way connected to the community. They’re for the bedroom community class of people who want to live and make money here but not actually get their hands dirty in a real city.

  21. It’s all subjective man. But do I think the tech bros buying condos in Mission Bay are as cool as my friends that are part of the local art, music, and bar scenes? No, I do not. Someone could feel differently, but that’s what I think.

  22. “San Francisco” was written in 1936. There were maybe 2 billion people on the planet. Now there are 7.3 and they can’t all live in San Francisco or America. There’s being xenophobic on one end, and pragmatic on the other. At a certain point you have to say if we let anyone else on the lifeboat it’s going to capsize and kill us all. How about people elsewhere make their cities as great and full of opportunity as San Francisco instead of trying to push out the people who have lived and built something here.

  23. It’s not hard to figure out who I am or what cultural and artistic value I’ve brought to the community but I’m not interested in convincing anyone or comparing myself to anyone else. It’s a fruitless activity to try and prove to people on an internet forum that you have more of a right to be in the city you have four generations of history in than an early 20’s San Diego bro who moved here last month to work for a startup making useless apps that will be belly up in a few years. My moral right to be here speaks for itself, but that’s irrelevant in a country of laws so I’m only interested in my legal right to be here. And the only way for me and many others like me to remain here is via rent control, something the voters of the city believe is important to maintain the continuity and richness of the city’s culture. Without artists, musicians, teachers, poets, weirdos, activists, hippies, etc. this place will be Mountain View or Walnut Creek and no one who knows the difference will be left to mourn what has been lost.

  24. Trust me. I’m full of rage over that fact and bring it up in therapy all the time. But things like divorce and moving to the suburbs happen. Also no one in the 70’s had any way of knowing what was going to happen in San Francisco. This was before Silicon Valley even really existed. There were fewer people in the area, in the state, on the planet, etc. Various members of my extended family did own stuff but it got sold when they died and the money was dispersed. It’s not to say I won’t inherit some money. I more than likely will. But not property, and definitely not anywhere I’d want to live.

  25. Interesting correlation. The “doom and gloom” leftists do sound a lot like the tinfoil hat gold bugs.

  26. Dang, I should have held onto my mother’s house in the Fruitvale for a few more years. A two-unit, 5 BR, 2 bath with 2 car tandem parking went for $262K in 2010.

  27. If your family has been here for four generations, why didn’t they buy property when you could pick up a 5-unit building for $20K? Not very foresighted, were they?

  28. Irrelevant – if he were certain the markets could collapse all he would have to do is buy some cheap out-of-the-money put options and wait fr his boat to come in.

  29. as an SF native who was forced to move out last year, I can tell you there aren’t any places available for 600k in SF, except MAYBE a studio. And I prefer to live in the neighborhoods you suggest, but while places might be listed at 600k, they are going for at least 100k over asking. So while I agree with everything else you state: the SF market won’t be made affordable by BMR; the prices won’t ever be “reasonable” in SF again compared to the rest of the world; and buying land is the one sure way to stay. I think having SF City invest in affordable housing– both new buildings and the creation of land trusts in existing housing– is where SF needs to go. I was displaced to South SF, and have given up on trying to live in SF. I wholeheartedly support a Moratorium not just in the Mission, but across SF, and support radical approaches to providing affordable housing for families in SF.

  30. You are hallucinating again, you are convinced that you see what you see event though you don’t see what you think you see. idiot, you are an easily manipulable fool.

  31. Sam was one of the early supporters of this site. His balanced and informed comments helped improve the standard of debate here, and critically honed progressive thinking by challenging their prejudices and weaknesses.

  32. Funny thing about that bond…the majority doesn’t even go to new building. A lot is for rehabbing public housing and down payment assistance. The Mission gets 50 million, because well, they’re so special.

  33. It’s funny to see leftists lick their chops at a possible market crash. As if low wage earners make out like bandits in economic slow downs.

  34. 100% affordable housing is lunacy. At best, the site should be a mixed-income housing development, with 60% favoring the low-income and 40% favoring market-rate. Developers do not build for charity, and they have to make SOME money from their investment. I’m not on the side of these developers at all, but I’m smart enough to realize that the sheer cost of building in SF is sky-high. The activists need to stop smoking crack and realize that no developer is going to build a high-rise that is 100% low-income.

  35. They can afford those trips to Europe because rent control is not means tested, and is therefore indiscriminately applied. Many poor people get no benefit from it, yet many affluent people do.

  36. Greg, if you could predict the level of the stock market, you’d be rich beyond measure, and would not have to rent out in the foggy avenues.

  37. Yeah, it’s all those dastardly Chinese investors. Has nothing to do with the thousands of highly paid technology workers that get recruited by companies here every year that we refuse to build housing for.

  38. Oh… don’t look now, but for what it’s worth your rally fizzled.

    In any case, I don’t think it’s useful to look at one day time periods. We’ll have what they call “bear rallies” from time to time, but the general trend over the next couple years will be DOWN. The bear is back with a vengeance, and I don’t mean Putin!

  39. Well stated. I’ve often asked complainers how come they can afford to go Europe twice a year, but can’t save up a down payment.

  40. Maybe not, but you do have to convince the voters, else you will never achieve your socialist nirvana because we the people won’t let you.

  41. If you knew that for sure, you could become the richest person on the planet by buying a few far-out-of-the-money put options.

    Then you could use those billions to buy BMR homes for everyone in SF.

    So why aren’t you rich?

  42. How long can the banksters get free money ( 0% interest)? More specifically, how can a system that relies on 0% interest last? It’s a house of cards, and one day will all come tumbling down. Sooner, rather than later. The exact outcome cannot be predicted, but it won’t be good.

  43. Well, obviously YOU have decided who is cool and desirable. Whether anyone else agrees with you is another matter

  44. I do not think you are an a** hole. But I do question your apparent perceived “right” to live in a place that you cannot afford simply because of your claim that you “were here first”.

    How about instead convincing us of the value you add, rather than nebulous claims to precedence?

  45. But there is high demand for units, currently anyway, As mentioned, DOM is at a near record low, sales prices are at a record high, and demand way exceeds supply at all price points.

    Maybe that won’t be true in 2016. But not many people have made millions betting against SF RE.

    The demand for upgrading rent controlled buildings is a factor. It will cease to be when we hear tenant activists no longer whining about evictions.

  46. well, Siddle/Sam: you want everyone you deem not worthy i.e. non-white people – to move out of San Francisco as soon as possible

  47. The evidence doesn’t support more sales during busts. It supports the opposite. Anyway, Chinese families tend to hold onto their investments long term as passive income. If there isn’t a high demand for units, speculators aren’t going to buy rent controlled buildings with the hopes of converting into condos when no one is around or rich enough to buy them.

  48. I’m just hoping to not be evicted from the city my family has been in for 4 generations. But I guess I’m the a**hole, right?

  49. Everyone knows who the cool people are buddy. Hint: they don’t ride motorized skateboards, take Uber, or drink in mixology bars.

  50. Yes, because public policy should be skewed towards the kind of people who you personally think are “cool”.

  51. Greg, I can certainly agree that some units in new towers stick around for a while. And part of the reason for that might be a softening of demand – many of the luxury towers in London and NYC are all pre-sold but SF is still a secondary market. Not much Russian and Arab money here in the same way as there.

    Another factor is that any developer who sells out on day one obviously priced the units too low. If the units take a few months to sell that indicates more accurate pricing than a mad insane rush to buy at the float.

    And worst case, a developer can always rent the units out at 5K a month or more and, as condos, they are exempt from rent control

    You’re clutching at straws a little here.

  52. There is a very big difference between a stock market correction ( remember we’ve had a massive bull market with the major indexes doubling over the last eight years) and a complete economic collapse or a collapse of the housing market. the last housing crisis precipitated a global credit crunch in which the credit markets essentially froze up such that the financial system became dysfunctional. To respond, global central banks, particularly the US Fed engaged in extreme accommodative policy, and we are seeing the “hangover” effects of some of this in emerging markets as well as the US.

    Many market participants seemed to believe that China could become an economic superpower the equivalent of the US or Europe in ten to twenty years, not the 100 years it took the US to develop liquid functioning capital markets. So China is undergoing some growing pains now and they just have to weather it out – their economy may be in a long term growth cycle but they are prone to recessions within the cycle.

    Unless the credit markets dry up and become dysfunctional again this current turmoil probably won’t impact the housing market in hot property areas much.

  53. Yep, people need to use their wits and smarts to deal with high housing costs, and not expect the government to bail them out of their financial shortcomings

  54. See above for more of your comments being removed by the moderators for breaching the posting guidelines here.

  55. (A different Greg)

    Sorry kids but here’s some reality:

    1. The city will never build enough BMR units. Ever. The math doesn’t work.

    2. We will never have the real estate crash that will bring prices down to levels that would be considered reasonable most other places. This is a great place to live so demand is high. We never have enough supply because we have limited land combined with some of the most onerous regulation in the country. The worst dip we will ever see is what happened in 2009. That sent prices down in some markets in the rest of the country by 50%. Prices here went down by 25% but have already made that all back up.

    3. If you really want to live here long term, find a home in a not-so-popular neighborhood like Excelsior, Visatacion Valley, Bay View. They won’t be unpopular forever. Something somewhat run down. Get an FHA loan (3.5% down, 30 year fixed). Even on a $600k place, that’s only $21k down. Barrow from friends and family. Over time, fix the place up. After a few years, refinance into a conventional mortgage (you will have built up equity so you can get a lower rate than the FHA loan). You will never have to worry about an evil landlord ever again.

  56. Much bigger daily losses have happened in terms of percentage of total value. 10/19/87 was 22.6%, Monday closed at a 3.6% loss. Really bad, but not necessarily the end of the world. I mostly agree though. Correction time.

  57. Earnings yield for tech is in the 5% range these days: rich valuation, perhaps, but hardly pets-dot-com territory.

  58. All that says is that the sellers prefer maximizing sales price to minimizing risk of holding inventory. That’s what developers do when worries about demand are small, not large.

  59. Lets get real here. Many of these tech companies lack clear business plans and even more have NO EARNINGS whatsoever to speak of. Tech CEOs are have been calling it a “Pivot and a Remix” of staff but many companies are already laying people off.

    What is sadly interesting is how foolish investors and real estate speculators have been trying to convince themselves that “this time is different!” Reality has started to sink in and Investors are realizing that the new tech dream had devolved into a classic speculative bubble.

  60. Days on market is an overall average. It doesn’t apply specifically to any one development, or even to one category of development. What the folks who I know in SPUR are telling me, is that these luxury towers they’re building now are having a tough time selling.

  61. I’m talking about the city planning process, which assumes continued population growth and inward migration, because that is what the evidence shows.

  62. If capital flows drive SF housing cost, what year-over-year house price change should we expect in 12 months time?

  63. “The process of planning is not assuming the most favorable case (from your personal point of view) and then sticking your head in the sand”

    Funny, that sounds exactly like what they’re doing over at SPUR and company.

  64. Greg, do you base that on the official DOM (days on market) statistic? Because that is at a near record low.

  65. Actually, Siddle-Sam, many of these developers are having a lot of trouble finding buyers to fill up their glass cages.

  66. I love how you continue to draw attention to the removal of your posts. And how you dig yourself deeper by denying what is clearly documented.

    Keep it up!

  67. Markets operate in cycles, but history shows that those cycles are a series of higher lows and higher highs. The massive 1987 crask took the Dow from 2400 to 1700 in a day. Now the Dow is ten times the level of that low.

    The 2009 low on the S&P 500 was 666 and we are now at three times that level.

    Like a good Marxist, you are always predicting the collapse of capitalism. But of course, you need to, because it never happens. In fact it is the Marxist states that collapse, with Venezuela the latest to be teetering on the brink

  68. Readers can easily find out you are lying by noting the 20 of your posts removed on the Welch thread and the 30 removed from the Taylor thread.

    You’ve been busted, liar.

  69. The market never crashes in a straight line. Even if it doesn’t crash this week or this month, the fundamentals remain the same.

    If your doctor tells you that your diet of junk food will lead to heart disease and diabetes, and you’re still doing fine the next year, it doesn’t mean he’s “wrong.”

  70. Keep on telling yourself that, it ratifies your preconceived notions without any evidence. I’m laughing my ass off at you being such a fool.

  71. We gave you a chance to conquer your idiocy but you are so enamored with your idiocy that you’ve allowed your idiocy to win, idiot.

  72. The inevitable market “correction” underway as we speak due to China’s retrenchment and interest rate hikes following the demise of QE.

  73. What is it like being so stupid that your short-sighted prejudices substitute for objective analysis?

  74. What market collapse?

    When the market collapses, so do tax revenues. The city only has dry powder at the peak of the market cycle.

    Bureaucrats make lousy speculators.

  75. But I am the ass who is kicking your ass.

    Was it 50 of your posts that the moderators removed this week-end?

  76. No, the city only tries to buy property at the very peak of the RE cycle, thereby enriching the one percent with your tax dollars.

  77. The voters usually reject housing bonds anyway even when, as with this one, it’s only 1% of what is needed to socialize local housing. Why would the voters want to pay higher taxes so that a few lucky lottery winners get a windfall deal?

    And in any event, most of that bond money goes towards rehabbing the projects and the construction costs of new build. Publicly-funded acquisition of land and buildings can only ever be an occasional and opportunistic thing.

    A fortiori, the SF CLT which is doing well if it buys one property a year. It’s a footnote not a solution.

  78. AAPL is up almost 6% this morning. NFLX over 9%. You’re going to have to wait a little longer for your market crash.

  79. A Trillion? I wonder. 380k units, @ $1m each, thats a 1/3 $T. Granted there are many multi-million dollar props, but there are also plenty of units (10% are SROs) worth $150-300k. Average home = $1M, so … .

    Still, trying to ‘municipalize’ – even the far smaller and cheaper 170,000 RC housing units – would cost more than $50b.

    Wait! Lets see how the $0.3b Housing Bond does in Nov. Then all we gotta do is ramp that up 100x. Maybe VCs will find that interesting, now that the IPO market has tanked.

  80. That’s the problem. The city can only build a relatively small number of BMR homes. Probably not even 1% of the demand for them. So we end up with a lottery system where a handful of people get a windfall and the vast majority get nothing.

    Maybe not a reason to build none, unless there is no money, but there should at least be some process in place to ensure that the lottery winners are contributors to the city, e.g. teachers and nurses, rather than the wannabee artists and activist losers who drift here because they can’t hack it anywhere else and feel “special”. (Oakland is fine for them).

  81. Your building is MORE likely to sell if we have a major economic collapse, as that increases the odds that the owner of your property will need the cash.

  82. But go out another decade, and twice as many more will arrive. The population of SF is projected to be over a million by the middle of the century.

    The process of planning is not assuming the most favorable case (from your personal point of view) and then sticking your head in the sand

  83. ” there are more than enough luxury condos to go around”

    Yet according to the housing element we’ve only builted 84% of the needed “luxury” units. If the luxury unit market isn’t fulfilled, then he’ll just go after the other housing stock, causing more evictions. But go ahead with your moratorium.

  84. What happened to ‘San Francisco, open your Golden Gate’?

    Leaving aside the parochial, xenophobic sentiments, San Francisco population went up in 1998 and 1999. Population dropped from 1986 to 1990 and from 2001 to 2004.

  85. You can tell progressives are desperate as their main strategy appears to be waiting and hoping for some kind of second great depression, which they believe will then magically bring about a socialist nirvana. (The reality is that would bring about a wave of municipal bankruptces).

    When all they have is cravings for doom and gloom, then you know they are intellectually bankrupt. Their big hope is that we’re all poor, but adorably equal.

  86. Yes, I’d prefer the city to build on the lots they already own and do nothing with, rather than become a real estate speculator. Experience shows that governments are really bad speculators, and usually buy at the top, then sell at the bottom as tax revenues fall and they become desperate

  87. Hoarding vacant land and buildings is exactly what developers get criticized for. It’s not any different if the city does it, except that we all have to pay for that expensive redundancy

    There is nothing magically good about the city owning land. It’s just an expense. And if the voters fail the bond in November, as they usually do, then there is no hope that the city will ever build on them.

  88. Markets go up and down, but the growth of the Bay Area merely wobbles, and continues to increase. There is a tendency for progressives ro actually crave economic failure because they think it will finally bring them what they want – presumably a city more like Detroit.

    We build so-called luxury homes because people want them and because they do not require a taxpayer subsidy. And the city can only ever buy a few lots and buildings. Municipalizing land and property in SF to the point where it would make a real impact would probably take a trillion dollars or so. Where do you propose finding that?

  89. What we could see is something like the ’08 foreclosure mess with banks evicting only to let units lie fallow. So those $6000/ rentals will be vacant but also those “affordable” units (costing $600-900k) delay getting built and never pencil out. Well, guess the later will happen regardless.

  90. I certainly hope you’re right. The last thing I need is an environment where my building could be put up for sale. I’ve been worrying about it for two years straight.

  91. I remember it in 98 and 99. All the interlopers disappeared almost overnight and the city returned to its former greatness. Sadly a whole lot of great people and businesses are already gone, lost to Oakland and LA forever.

  92. Do you think the wave has finally crested? I sure hope so. My Richmond district is still relatively intact.

  93. “How do you know we are at the end of a boom?”
    I don’t. I’m no financial guru like the talking heads on TV. They say don’t panic, this is just a correction, buy on the dip. Netflix is cheap now. Twitter’s been beaten up. Buy to your heart’s content!

    And then you have the local real estate experts… it’s a strong market. Lots of demand. Fundamentals look good, so even if the tech bubble bursts, it won’t affect the local economy and real estate market at all (which of course is heavily invested in tech).
    Me? I take a different view, but what do I know? I’ve made my bets, but we’ll have to see how it all shakes out.

  94. If there are plenty of luxury condos in SF, then why are so many rich people with SF jobs buying homes in Oakland at insane prices? We’re getting flooded on this side of the bay.

    I find it real hard to believe there is an oversupply of high-end housing in SF when people are dropping 500-750k on homes in Temescal, West Oakland, and Jingletown.

  95. Say 100,000 people leave San Francisco some time soon. All else equal, isn’t having built to a much higher population the best possible rent and eviction control policy?

    What makes building homes for people to live ‘insanity’?

  96. It is quite likely that as many people will vanish from San Francisco during the next downturn. Maybe more. Building to the boom is insanity.

  97. The real estate bubbholics are about to get OWNED by market forces. The stock market just suffered one of the steepest selloffs in years. Following an unprecedented 1,000-point decline at the open on Monday, the Dow closed with a loss of nearly 600 points.

    As in August 1997, 1998, 2007 and 2008 we could be in the early stage of a very serious situation. Tech stocks are taking the worst beating and the stock market is in correction. Alot of companies are not going to make their revenue goals and this means that they will be cutting back, killing deals, laying off, and trying to back peddle out of their commitments.

    If tech crashes, who’s going to move into all those new luxury apartments they are building around the city? Memba the crash? Tech Stocks are poised for massive selloff

    Ahhh sweet Schadenfreude.

  98. From 2011 to 2014, San Francisco saw 7,000 units built, but population in 2014 was almost 50,000 greater than in 2010.

    To keep pace, the city should have added 20,000 units.

  99. What is really sad is the tried and true liberal Democrat strategy is to wait until your opponents fall over from exhaustion or from fighting among themselves and then declare victory.

  100. Let’s get this straight: There. Is. No. Housing. Shortage. Not in luxury condos. There’s a shortage in affordable housing, but there are more than enough luxury condos to go around, and building more of them isn’t making a dent in the affordability crisis.

    The reason the housing crisis wasn’t solved in 2001, or in 2008, is that we keep building luxury developments that nobody needs when the inevitable bust comes.

    As for praying for a crash, this isn’t about prayer, and I don’t pray in any case. This is just reality. We’re at the end of the boom and market psychology is now in the process of reversing.

  101. Build too, but scarf up that land when the opportunity arises because they’re not making any more land here.

  102. You have it exactly backward.

    The problem is that during the busts, we always forget the booms.

    We’ve been here before. In fact, we’ve been in way worse places before, and more than once. The housing shortage wasn’t solved in 2001, and it wasn’t solved in 2008. Each time, the economy rebounded and the problem came back and stronger than before. You can pray for a crash as much as you want, but that won’t make the housing shortage go away.

  103. The city already owns multiple properties that can support BMR development on within walking distance of 16th and Mission BART. Why don’t we actually build BMR housing (you know, the thing people can live in) on them instead of banking even more land at top of market prices with no plan to pay for the actual structures?

  104. I think we’re going to see a lot of these projects come to a grinding halt now. What we’re witnessing in the markets may just be the beginning of the end. Soon there will be a lot less tech money sloshing around. And with less tech money sloshing around, demand for these high-end developments will crater. San Francisco is a boom-bust town, and during the booms we always forget the busts.

  105. But Maximus claims the Jangs have a buyer willing to pay $55m. Or $150k per unit to them as well. That’s “affordable” to someone (thats not poor). The question is Who?

  106. The city spent 18.5 million to buy out a 72 unit project that was entitled. That’s 250k/unit. Let’s give them a 100k/unit discount because Maximus’s project isn’t entitled yet. So at 150k/unit, 331 units, that’s about 50 million dollars. And then the city still has to build the building (and 490 South Van Ness). Where is that money going to come from?

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