Posts Tagged ‘architect’

“City Target” Store Opening October 13th at “City Center 3.0” – Geary & Masonic – Mervyn’s Heights is Now Target Tor

Monday, May 6th, 2013

Brand-new giant signs like this one never lie:

Click to expand

I’ll tell you, area NIMBYs got steamrolled on this one. It’s not that certain millionaire, property-owning ladies residing west of the Western Addition and south of North of NoPA are happy about this situation, but they didn’t get any traction due to massive community support, particularly from younger, non-millionaire mom-types, right?

And, I mean if you purchase your Great Estate next to a shuttered Mervyns with hundreds and hundreds of empty parking spaces, well, you gotta figure something’s going to replace it sooner or later.

So that’s it – Mervyn’s Heights is now Target Tor.

And NoPA (which actually isn’t north of the Golden Gate Park Panhandle, take a look at a map sometime) should now be called SoTA, South of Target.

All hail the second coming of City Target to the 415.

That’s It! The City Target Store at Geary and Masonic is a Done Deal – Work Has Begun – It Won’t Be Long Now!

Monday, April 22nd, 2013

See?

Aslan is on the move at Mervyn’s Heights:

Click to expand

And if that’s not enough for you, somebody hung a sign what says City Target (although it’s all bunched up so I couldn’t see it clearly.

So that’s it.

Did you know that Target likes opening new stores in October (in addition to, for some reason, April and July, I think)? It’s true.

All right, let’s travel down memory lane all the way to 2010, below.

CONGRATULATIONS. TARGET. WELCOME!

Enjoy:

[Oh, and BTW, those NOPNA NIMBIES were all crestfallen when they saw the reaction to Target’s community meeting three years ago. Consider this Target a crushing defeat for the millionaire homeowners of the Western Addition NOPA.]

“Boy oh boy, at least a couple certified San Francisco NIMBYs had steam coming out of their ears after seeing the warm reception the Target Team got last night. Oh well.

SFist has the reaction, and Alan Wang of KGO-TV / ABC7 has the story, and, oh, here are bits from SF.StreetsBlog‘s hardworking Matt Baumethe Face Book, Dain Fitzgerald, Beth “target! target! target!” SpotswoodBike NOPA, Zach Perkins, and Katie Worth. (Interestingly, SFGate, San Francisco’s Internet Newspaper, has nothing about Our Empty Mervyn’s today, just a bit on Target’s new Harlem joint in New Yawk.)

The upshot on yesterday’s event from the Twitter:

Not a single NIMBY hysteric. Just very understandable concerns and questions. Wow SF, sometimes your reasonability surprises me!”

Well, the NIMBYs will just have to bide their time. They’ll have to put their thinking caps on to combat the likes of lovely Target-fanatic Charlize Theron and her loyal pet, Bullseye. Too bad C.T. wasn’t in town, maybe she could have dropped by and warmed up the nabe (51 F. and windy windy) yesterday evening. Or Heidi Klum, whomever.

And oh, here’s a bit from a rich yuppie* who lives in the the Western Addition (but doesn’t know it). Apparently, he was too busy taking photos with his expensive camera with its expensive image stabilized lens (to later process on his expensive Apple computer) to address the crowd. Oh well.

Now, on with the show:

Step right in for the Community Meeting:

Click to expand

Roam the halls, if you want:

Big, in’nt? About 100,000 square feet big:

But what’s this, “I Heart Target?” What kind of NIMBY meeting is this?

It’s not a NIMBY meeting at all, it’s a YIMBY affair, it’s like when can you move in, Target?

Mercy! Moving on…

Regional Development Manager John Dewes introduced himself to the crowd to kick things off. He said he was here in town “to talk and listen.”

Of course the 130 assembled San Franciscans (mas o menos, that was my nose count) had notes for Target’s straight-outta-Minneapolis Away Team, don’t you know. We had some ideas to express while noshing on straight-outta-the-SoMA-Costco biscotti and Brownie Bites.

But before all that, let’s look at some renderporn du Tar-GHEY:

That was the Geary frontage, here’s the Masonic si-iiiide:

What an improvement:

And what’s this, wind turbines on top? Yes:

The whole shebang will be in the Heart of the City, near the Masonic Trader Joes:

Here’s the close-up:

And just look at all the bus stops:

And here’s the pitch, from straight-out-of-Central-Casting architect Thom Lasley.

Target could open by early 2012, if all things go well. Generally, they open stores during the months of April, July and September, so there you go. This store would have less than 100,000 square feet of selling space, so it will be considerably smaller than a typical suburban Target, which offers you about 135,000 sq.ft. to peruse. Still, a Target is a Target so the product mix wouldn’t be too far off from what you’d expect.

Now comes Question and Answer Time.

1. Howard Epstein, Chair of San Francisco Republican(!) Party, asked about the number of employees at the store. The Masonic outlet would have about 250 employees, as would the proposed Target store down at Metreon in SoMA. Nobody could hazard a guess as to how much these stores would add to the tax base.

2. The Target Team will look into trip generation, the amount of increased activity in the area. They are well aware that they won’t be getting “traditional suburban guests.” Their customers will be younger and be more likely to bike or walk to and fro.

3. District 2 resident and political candidate and mom Kat Anderson asked about the hiring of seniors and students, the availability of a delivery service and whether T would participate in a bike share program. This garnered the replies you’d expect from fashionable Target Communications Manager Sarah Bakken. (Currently, Target does not deliver from stores anywhere in America.)

4. A University Terrace resident said her neighbors supported the proposal. Her daughter inquired about the availability of mac and cheese.

5. A resident from just across the street “loves” T but worries over parking.

6. Another local pushed for the use of renewable energy and local contractors when building time begins.

7. A pushy woman voiced concern over gender and age discrimination when hiring-time starts. Still, she thinks T would be “wonderful for the neighborhood.”

8. A Ewing Terrace resident worried about delivery times and hoped that they wouldn’t come at night. John Dewes said that there would be three to four truck deliveries per week. Then he responded to a question about a development timeline. We’re still way at the beginning now, a conditional use permit and approval from the Planning Department are a ways down the road. However, since the proposal would be just an “interior remodel,”  no CEQA-style environmental impact report should be required. Anyway, project approval could come by the end of 2010.

9. A woman fretted about the line of cars on Masonic due to the nearby Trader Joes and wondered if Target would consider the use of parking attendants to direct drivers. John Dewes “doesn’t see that kind of congestion” on the horizon for Target.

10 A Duboce Park resident polled the neighbors in his building – these are people he knows shop at Target owing to all the shopping bags he sees getting recycled. He said 19 out of 20 people he surveyed supported the Target store on Masonic. He feels sales tax revenue should go to San Francisco instead of Colma. He was surprised to see the crowd’s support of the project given that “all you hear in the media” is that San Francisco is “anti-chain.”

11. A woman reminded us all that San Francisco is a “transit first city,” so she asked whether toilet paper come in something less than a 36 pack. The answer is that 12-packs would be available in light of special circumstances of San Francisco shoppers.

12. A younger fellow asked T to post hearing dates on a website so that pro-Target residents could “pack the hearings.” (Two known area NIMBYs reacted in disgust, kind of smirking at each other.)

13.  Another person worried about the increase in traffic exiting on O’Farrell and also about the closeness of Trader Joes. Thom Lasley assured all that the food sold at the two stores would complement each other. TJ’s would continue to have higher end stuff while T would focus on “staples.”

You get the idea. It went on and on.

Now, let’s hear from the pols. Hardworking Richmond District Supervisor Eric Mar et filia Jade took a bunch of notes but then had to leave for another appointment:

District 5 Supe Ross Mirkarimi came to express his concerns over traffic on Masonic, local hiring, and the Geary B.R.T.

He’s seen here with property-owning KLA Geary L.L.C. representative Adam Miller, Target Communcations Manager Sarah Bakken, and Tar-chitect Thom Lasley:

Speaking of pols, aforementioned District 2 candidate Kat Anderson was a fireball of energy, typing up a mess of notes on her MacBook and graciously forwarding them to me:

Here’s just part of her shorthand:

“Target started in 1962 but grew out of Dayton Hudson (1946 policy instituted to give 5% back to the communities of our stores, which is $3 million per week).  Within the Bay Area last year, community giving was almost $ 1 mill in SF and $3 mill in the Bay Area.   (ie, last week:  Arts and Wonder.  Nonprofits going back to 1991 inc. SF Aids Foundation, Asian Art, de Young, Take Charge of Education, support to 85 schools in SF; even tho’ we don’t have a store in SF, we know that many of our guests live in SF.”

Kat typified the crowd, supporting the proposal but also expressing concern about specific issues.

Now, who else was there – how about Bill Barnes, aide to District 2 Supervisor Michela Alioto Pier, and Alex Tourk, Founder of Ground Floor Public Affairs?

The whole thing went on and on until after 8:00 PM.

(People, obviously Target’s going to do traffic studies, right? So why not give them a chance to do that, right? Obviously, there will be some sort of local-hiring program imposed by the City, the same way that was done with our Costco in the SoMA. I mean, that’s baked into the cake already, right? And people, Target won’t need to have Trader Joe’s-style parking attendants because Target will have ample parking, capiche? And if you Fix Masonic people want to take out a bunch of parking spaces on Masonic to put in proper bike lanes, well, be my guest and go for it. But it’s not Target’s job to take an expensive ride on your hobby horse, right? In the meantime, just pilot your bikes onto the needlessly-wide sidewalks of the hilly parts of Masonic, as I do, depending on conditions.)

So let’s see here, as Santa Barbara goes, so goes San Francisco? Probably not.

We’ll get our Targets, finally, eventually.

Expect More, Pay Less(TM), baby. Leave Us Begin living in the red.

Bon courage, Target. Excelsior.

*Ah, a response from a The Square person, who draws attention to this “news story” link. Fair enough. Be sure to let them know if you think their bit is biased – they’re looking for feedback. And they want to know from me if I think they’re “disconnected” from the community. I don’t know, based on their editorial (linked to above), sure, they’re disconnected from the people that showed up to the meeting, anyway.

All right let’s see here, I tell you I don’t know what “parts of the Western Addition” means, actually, the whole shebang betwixt Larkin in the Tenderloin and Divisidero out west is the Western Addition, right? Check your real estate papers filed with the City and County – they’ll say “WESTERN ADDITION,” srsly.

All right, what else, apparently, I’m going to need to “research thoroughly” any comments I make online about The Square. All right, I’ll have to show my work then, uh, Canon 7D “premium” camera ownership + Canon 24-105mm IS + Apple PC + elitist attitude + strong NIMBY tendencies + poorly argued editorial + lives in the Western Addition but doesn’t know it + strongly attached to real estate industry microneighborhood marketing names = rich yuppie, somewhat disconnected from the regular people of the Western A. Is that a personal attack? I don’t know. A lot of people the world over would love to trade places, I’m sure.

The Future is Now: Our Transbay Transit Tower, Tallest Building in San Francisco, Breaks Ground

Wednesday, March 27th, 2013

Well, here it is:

“Transbay Transit Tower, tallest building in San Francisco, breaks ground

Pelli Clarke Pelli tower joins Transbay Transit Center

SAN FRANCISCO, March 27, 2013 — Officials ceremonially broke ground today for Transbay Transit Tower, the building by Pelli Clarke Pelli Architects that will be San Francisco’s tallest.

Standing 1,070 feet tall (326 meters), the 60-story office tower will be the tallest on the West Coast and the seventh tallest in the U.S. The tower will connect directly to the Transbay Transit Center, a multi-modal transportation hub also designed by Pelli Clarke Pelli Architects. Together, the tower and the transit center form the new heart of a revitalized neighborhood.

“The Transbay Transit Tower and neighboring Transbay Transit Center are powerful individual buildings designed with a common civic purpose–to create the 21st century gateway to San Francisco and a state-of-the-art place marker on its skyline,” said Fred Clarke, senior principal of Pelli Clarke Pelli Architects. “Embodying sustainable, transit-based development, the tower combined with the transit center is a model for the future of our cities.”

The tower takes the timeless form of the obelisk and has a slender, tapering silhouette. The walls are composed of clear glass with pearlescent white, metal accents. These horizontal and vertical accents gradually taper in depth to accentuate the curved glass corners. The walls rise past the top floor to form a transparent crown that appears to dissolve into the sky. Carved into the tower top is a vertical facet that will be lit at night. Like the transit center, the design for the tower emphasizes sustainability and has a LEED Gold objective.

“Transbay Transit Tower will be a new icon for the city and state,” said Paul Paradis, Hines senior managing director. “The tower will also set a new standard for healthy and productive work environments.”

Hines and Boston Properties will develop the tower. The sale of land to the tower developers is helping to fund the transit center. Pelli Clarke Pelli, working with Hines, was awarded the tower and the transit center commission after winning an international competition in 2007.

Founded in 1977 and led by Cesar Pelli, Fred Clarke, and Rafael Pelli, Pelli Clarke Pelli Architects has designed some of the world’s most recognizable buildings, including the World Financial Center in New York, the Petronas Towers in Kuala Lumpur, and the International Finance Centre in Hong Kong.”

Gethsemane Baptist Church is Turning Into a Single Family Residence? “THERE GOES THE NEIGHBORHOOD”

Wednesday, December 5th, 2012

This is the scene in the Western Addition at 601 Broderick and Grove, the site of Gethsemane Baptist Church

Click to expand

The graffiti is new, you see it? It’s all, “THERE GOES THE NEIGHBORHOOD.

Let’s take a closer look:

“The proposal is to convert the existing church into a single family residence.”

Well, that’s direct, huh, right there in black and white.

[RACIAL SUBTEXT MODE = ON] Uh, so the Western Addition is losing yet another African-American church so yet another  millionaire white family can move in, except realtors* call it the North of Panhandle Area now because it doesn’t have the baggage associated with the Western A? That’s my guess, but tell if I’m way off on this one, Gentle Reader. [RACIAL SUBTEXT MODE = OFF]

Oh, architect James Hill is all over this one at his excellent-looking Talking Buildings blog.

All the deets right here.

Via Redfin.com: “601 Broderick is a charming old church … in the heart of NOPA.  Not for the faint of heart or faithless, this property needs a revival. … make them believers. Heaven only knows what the possibilities could be!”  Receiving multiple offers on first showing, the sale closed before the For Sale sign was hammered in the ground.  Highland Ferndale Partners,  a luxury home developer purchased the church for restoration and resale.  David Papale, partner and realtor,  prefers not to disclose the sale price, but  redfin.com notes the price clearly at $1,401,000, 40% over asking, a sizable investment in the future of the community. One might speculate, since this is real estate, that the sale price is more than adequate to cover the losses the bank faced in foreclosure on their faulty loan, a profit unrealized by the church.   Mr. Papale claims, while the possibilities for the property include six  units, it will be restored as a single family  home and to its original Victorian appearance without “that horrible addition.”  

And there’s a little bit more here in the comments section of this Socketsite post, Control-F for 601.

So that’s the sitch and the graffiti artist is doing all s/he can to draw attention.

Mission accomplished.

On It Goes…

*Always in lower case

Box, Cantilever, Pipe, Brace: Beautiful San Francisco Architecture – Who’s the “Starchitect” Who Came Up With This?

Thursday, November 29th, 2012

Near Mervyn’s Heights:

Click to expand

NB: Never use the term “starchitect” without putting it inside quote marks or otherwise showing the reader what a joke the word is.

Gracious Urban Living: A Yale Box on Stilts, Filled with Mini-Blinds – 767 Buena Vista Park East, San Francisco, California

Tuesday, November 29th, 2011

From Bauhaus to our house:

Click to expand

“At Yale the students generally began to notice that everything they designed, everything the faculty members designed, everything the visiting critics (who gave critiques of the students) designed…started to look the same. Everyone designed the same box…of glass…and steel and concrete, with tiny beige bricks substituted occasionally. This came to be known as the Yale Box.”

House Democratic Leader Nancy Pelosi Graces the New Richardson Apartments in Hayes Valley – HUD’s $5 Million Grant

Monday, November 28th, 2011

[UPDATE: Barbara Taylor has the deets.]

[UPDATE II: And it should be noted that Andrea Cochran Landscape Architecture designed the landscape for this project.]

Well here’s the news from last week:

U.S. Department of Housing and Urban Development Secretary Shaun Donovan today announced the recipients of the 2011 Sustainable Communities Grants, totaling nearly $96 million. Twenty-seven communities and organizations will receive Community Challenge grants and 29 regional areas will receive Regional Planning grants. The goal of HUD’s Sustainable Communities grants is to help communities and regions improve their economic competitiveness by connecting housing with good jobs, quality schools and transportation.”

Our San Francisco Bay Area Metropolitan Transportation Commission scored $5,000,000 worth of these grants, so some feds dropped by to celebrate this afternoon.

San Francisco Mayor with House Democratic Leader Nancy Pelosi greeting people at the brand new Drs. Julian and Raye Richardson Apartments for the formerly homeless on Fulton near Gough:

Click to expand

Oh, here they are up at the Richardson’s awesome-looking rooftop garden:

Via MayorEdLee

And here’s Supervisor and MTC Commissioner David Campos. (To him, Nancy Pelosi “will always be Speaker Nancy Pelosi.”)

Remember this mural? I haven’t seen it in a while. Anyway, here’s where’s your Central Freeway used to be. Parcel G., specifically, per the Socketsite.

All the deets, after the jump

(more…)

The Perils of “Brutal” Architecture: Our Hyatt Regency Embarcadero Hasn’t Aged All That Well

Thursday, September 1st, 2011

Here’s your “brutal architecture” from architect John Portman over at the Hyatt Regency Embarcadero. Well, part of it, anyway.

The no-longer-revolving site of the former Equinox Restaurant:

Click to expand

(Yes, they leave their Christmas lights, oh, I’m sorry, “holiday” lights up all year ’round, a practice considered “tacky” where I’m from.)

The whole place is nothing but concrete, plus some tiles on the floor.

This the lobby from above – tile everywhere:

Via Brandon Doran

But see what the employees have done? They’ve laid down some carpeting, you know, to ease the pain, the brutality:

(Especially when there’s water on the floor on a rainy day, you can’t really tell that you’re inside a building. Some guests don’t like that.)

Anyway, all the deets:

“This seminal 20-story gray concrete structure—designed by influential architect John Portman, who launched the trend toward indoor-outdoor hotel environments—is the focal point of the Embarcadero Center, where more than 100 shops and restaurants cater to the Financial District. The spectacular 17-story atrium lobby (listed by Guinness World Records as the largest hotel lobby in the world)…”

“Cozy” this place is not.

Take a visit sometime, why not?

Oh No, Ed Lee! Rose Pak and Willie Brown Throw Down Against SF Ethics Commission in Sing Tao Daily!

Monday, August 8th, 2011

I don’t know what to make of this image below.

Is it a portion of yesterday’s Sing Tao Daily? (And, if so, wouldn’t that please Caroline Chen of the SF Weekly?)

And does it have some bons mots from Chinatown ward healer Rose Pak and former Mayor Willie Brown?

And does it concern their reactions to the San Francisco Ethics Commission coming down hard on defunct (or maybe not-so-defunct after allRun Ed Run and area attorney Enrique Pearce?

As always, You Make The Call.

Exhibit A, from Rose Pak, on the topic of the recent statements from San Francisco Ethics Commission Executive Director John St. Croix:

“He doesn’t even know the U.S. Constitution. I don’t know how he does his job. How can you deprive people of their rights to volunteer for a campaign? It is unheard in history that if someone enters the race, those who helped him before are not allowed to help him again,” said Pak.

Snap!

And Exhibit B, from His Willieness*:

 “Former Mayor Willie Brown said St. Croix obviously does not understand what democracy is about. His anti-Ed Lee position has disqualified himself for his post. “When you announce your candidacy, I will not be able to support you. This is just unbelievable,” said Brown.”

(Keep in mind when you hear allegations of constitutionality and whatnot, that Willie Brown went to UC Hastings School of Law and Enrique Pearce and Mayor Ed Lee both attended UC Berkeley’s Boalt Hall.)

See? Read it for yourself:

Oh, how about this crude translation? It’s the best I can do right now:

“In response to the letter from San Francisco Ethics Commission Director John St. Croix, supporters of Ed Lee for Mayor reprimanded St. Croix for actions being based on nothing. They also questioned his qualification for the position. 

Chinese Chamber of Commerce consultant Rose Pak described it the biggest joke of the world. She said it is full of nonsense. He didn’t know what he’s talking about. “He doesn’t even know the U.S. Constitution. I don’t know how he does his job. How can you deprive people of their rights to volunteer for a campaign? It is unheard in history that if someone enters the race, those who helped him before are not allowed to help him again,” said Pak.

Enrique Pearce had consulted St. Croix. However, the latter said differently afterwards. Besides, he didn’t provide written replies to questions that Progress for All raised or gave explanations, said Rose Pak. “I will be the first one not to comply. You don’t have the authority to formulate the law, which is not free to go by your interpretation.”

 Former Mayor Willie Brown said St. Croix obviously does not understand what democracy is about. His anti-Ed Lee position has disqualified himself for his post. “When you announce your candidacy, I will not be able to support you. This is just unbelievable,” said Brown.

Hey, what do you think? Is this an accurate translation? Tell me, tell me if you think the translation isn’t good.

*Speaking of Willie Brown (who still writes for the San Francisco Chronicle) and Rose Pak (who used to write for the San Francisco Chronicle), here’s a bit (in the San Francisco Chronicle) from Willie on Rose circa April 2011:

Holding court at the party for the opening of the new airport terminal, Rose was seated at the table with interim Mayor Ed Lee and his wife, Anita, and a host of other local officials.

“I want every one of you to call his office and tell him he should run for mayor,” Rose told the table. “And do it right away so that there’s no misunderstanding.”

Then she turned to the architect David Gensler.

“Didn’t you do this terminal?” she asked.

“Yes,” he said.

“Didn’t you remodel this terminal before?”

“Yes,” he said.

“Then your firm should raise a million dollars for his election campaign.”

Poor Gensler, he didn’t know what hit him.”

Drs. Julian and Raye Richardson Apartments Now All-The-Way Done: Housing for Formerly Homeless at 365 Fulton

Friday, August 5th, 2011

You remember a year ago when I told you Drs. Julian and Raye Richardson Apartments Now Halfway Done?

I do. Good times, huh?

Well, here it is, all finished, AFAIAC:

Click to expand

It looks better than the artist’s conceptions, I think. Swoopier, anyway.

Hurray!

Leave us remember:

“This is the scene these days down at the Civic Centerish worksite of the Drs. Julian and Raye Richardson Apartments – it’s just a shrouded box now, see?

Click to expand

This is what Central Freeway Parcel G looked like at the beginning, back in April

David Baker + Partners Architects, San Francisco, California

and May:

David Baker + Partners Architects, San Francisco, California

And this is what it will look like soon:

You won’t be able to miss it:

Should be done by August 2011.”