Parkmerced decision delayed by Board of Supervisors 

A Board of Supervisors hearing on the $1.2 billion Parkmerced redevelopment project has been continued until May 24, when supervisors are set to meet in closed session with developers and the City Attorney’s Office over rent control measures.

Supervisors heard the matter for five hours Tuesday night. Some residents are concerned about the environmental impact report for the project, which calls for the demolition of about 1,500 1940s-era townhouses to make way for more than 7,000 new units. The multidecade project would make the southwest San Francisco neighborhood into a new transit hub by extending the Muni M-Oceanview, and increase housing units there by 5,700.

Opponents of the project contend that redevelopment of the property is unnecessary because it isn’t blighted, and that traffic increases for 19th Avenue and a funding source for transit aren’t properly addressed in the impact report. They are also concerned about the loss of what they contend is a historic neighborhood and what it will mean to live in a long-term construction zone.

Supervisor David Campos was openly skeptical of the report. Last week after Supervisor Eric Mar visited the neighborhood, he told The Examiner he contacted the City Attorney’s Office about solidifying developer promises on the rent control issue.

PJ Johnston, a spokesman for the developer investment group, said residents of demolished homes would be placed in a new rent-controlled unit before they are displaced. He said he is confident developers can strike an agreement with city officials and Tuesday’s delay has more to do with overall opposition to the project rather than the impact report itself.

“We’re confident we can address their concerns — especially regarding tenant protections,” Johnston said in an email.
 
If supervisors strike down the report, project investors would have to redraft it. If it is approved, the project would move forward pending additional supervisor approval on a development agreement.

dschreiber@sfexaminer.com

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