San Francisco has gone through multiple iterations throughout its lifetime, but more so in the last decade. As tech giants have poured into the Bay Area, developments to accommodate its needs are a constant sight along its city streets; listing all of them would be no small feat. Instead, here are five changes coming down the pipeline by initiative.
The Mission District, a San Francisco neighborhood known for its forearm-sized namesake the “Mission burrito” and its rich Latino history, has seen maybe the most change in the last ten years. But even as the city transforms, its socially conscious spirit remains–especially within communities that warrant it the most.
Enter Mission Economic Development Agency.
Known as Meda, this nonprofit espouses a mission to “strengthen low-and moderate [sic] income Latinos families by promoting economic equity and social” through its community developments. The agency is spearheading the development of at least six low-to-mid housing projects in the Mission and surrounding areas within the next two to three years–a move that will put approximately 733 affordable units in the district.
California Pacific Medical Center (CPMC) consists of four of the oldest San Francisco hospitals. Affiliated with not-for-profit Sutter Health, CPMC and Sutter Health facilities have serviced the Bay Area since the 1800s. With the construction of two new hospitals over 80 percent to completion, the additional hospitals will meet stricter earthquake safety standards. Employing 120 seismic “viscous wall dampers” will make the medical facilities as being among the “safest and greenest hospitals in California”. Due to open early next year, the facility will add 11 floors and 274 acute-care beds.
San Francisco is about to see green–both in sustainable housing and revenue. With the construction of a 420-unit, 450,000 square-foot building brimming with retail space, parking and modern amenities like a rooftop terrace, spa, golf simulator and more–all compliant with the Build It Green Multifamily Building rating system–the complex at 150 Van Ness is set to become the green standard for SF. The complex is set to finish in about a year from now.
According to a recent survey: public transportation is a major problem for Bay Area residents. In the poll, 70 percent of residents cite a “great need” for expansion and an end to service issues plaguing Muni, Caltrain, and BART. These undependable transit systems have led to an uptick in car commuters, making streets more congested. There is a dig happening underneath the streets of South of Market (SoMa), Union Square, and Chinatown that promises to alleviate these issues in a major way. When finished, the Central Subway project will allow the T Third Line trains to provide an alternate link around the busiest streets in the city. By providing this link between downtown and the T-line, the Central Subway Project aims to alleviate at least some of the “great need”.
Senator Dianne Feinstein’s and East Bay Congressman Mark DeSaulnier’ letter to the Bay Area Metropolitan Transportation Commission (MTC) was a plea for alternate routes from to San Francisco–including a second Bay Bridge. The letter suggests that traffic has caused soul-crushing economic and quality of life issues. The two officials promise that life would be much more “tolerable” with their proposed change in infrastructure. And structural engineer Roumen V. Mladjov backs them up, at least about needing a second bridge to alleviate traffic.
Said Mladjov in a SFGate op-ed, “ [W]e need an additional bay bridge. Let us consider the statistics: Since 1990, the region’s population has increased by 27.5 percent to 7.68 million today. It is projected to increase by another 21 percent to 9.3 million by 2040. Traffic on our roads and bridges increases proportionally: the 300,000 vehicles per day on the San Francisco-Oakland Bay Bridge, will increase to some 363,000 vehicles by 2040. The attraction of the Bay Area means this growth will not abate.”
Whether the MTC will act is still TBD. But one thing is for certain: San Francisco, always a city on the grow, isn’t slowing down anytime soon.