September 12, 2016 Corey Smith

Reimagining San Francisco’s Southeastern Waterfront

On September 9th, the San Francisco Housing Action Coalition (SFHAC) got an update from the Office of Economic and Workforce Development (OEWD) on the City’s southern bayfront development projects. Specifically, City departments including OEWD, Planning, Port Authority, Rec and Park, Office of Community Investment and Infrastructure (OCII) and the Municipal Transportation Agency (MTA) are meeting on a regular basis to coordinate five major development proposals along the eastern waterfront.

Proposals currently referred to as Mission Rock, Pier 70, the NRG Site, PG&E and India Basin will bring 20,000 homes (including 6,700 that will be below-market-rate), 35,000 new permanent jobs and more than 520 acres of new open space to the area. With all the moving pieces, project coordination and robust public benefits are top-of-mind for City officials. Connected neighborhoods with amenities like grocery stores, fire stations, parks and schools will maximize their desirability.

Southeastern Waterfront

SFHAC was pleased to learn how these projects will mitigate sea level rise, which is projected to reach 36 inches over the next century. The City’s position is that that development along the waterfront is actually the best tactic to ensure long-term investment. Mello-Roos taxes, infrastructure finance districts (IFDs), tax increments and impact fees paid by private developers are some of the revenue sources the City is exploring. The OEWD team emphasized how developers are being pushed to create the most environmentally responsive projects possible.

On the transportation front, there is a focus on improving current transit infrastructure while investing in the future. In fact, the City has developed three different transportation plans to reach 2020, 2030 and beyond. Outside of investments in MUNI and the need to connect it with BART and CalTrain into an integrated system, the City is exploring water transit options with multiple facilities around the Bay Area. Are we a decade away from some shuttle buses along the peninsula getting replaced by shuttle ferries? It’s certainly on the table.

In total, SFHAC commends the OEWD and other City agencies for taking a holistic approach to not view these projects in isolation, but rather as a way to comprehensively build the waterfront for the future. The SFHAC is looking forward to learning about the next steps for this important, evolving area.

If you want to find out more, check out OEWD’s website.

OEWD made this presentation to SFHAC’s Regulatory Committee. All business and organization members are welcome to attend these meetings. Learn more about our membership levels here.

Corey Smith

Corey Smith is HAC's Executive Director and can be reached at

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