Panel’s vote on Mission project gets pushed back

by J.K. Dineen : sfgate – excerpt

The San Francisco Planning Commission has delayed its vote on the proposed Mission District housing project known as the Beast on Bryant to give opponents and the builder another crack at negotiations.

The 335-unit project, which includes the donation of land for an affordable housing development, has been in the works for three years and has become one of the most contentious Mission District development deals in recent memory.

Boe Hayward, a spokesman for the developer, said the project vote was postponed for two weeks “at the request of the mayor’s office.” The development team will meet next week with the mayor’s office, community activists opposed to the project and members of the city’s building trade unions.

The San Francisco Building and Construction Trades Council has been pushing for what it is calling “a Better Beast” — a project that is at least 50 percent affordable and includes 50,000 square feet for artists and “PDR” space, which stands for production, distribution and repair.

In total the project, at 2000-2070 Bryant St., calls for 335 units, 139 of which would be affordable. Developer Nick Podell wouldn’t build the affordable units but would turn land over to the Mayor’s Office of Housing, which would select a nonprofit affordable housing builder.

The city has stated it has sufficient money to build the affordable units. The two buildings, the affordable one and the market-rate one, would be separated by a midblock alley.

The project will be back before the commission on June 2. It is the first in a quartet of market-rate developments that are fueling further discord in a neighborhood already polarized by issues of gentrification and affordability… (more)

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