Civil grand jury: Parkmerced tenant rights at risk in redevelopment 

A civil grand jury in San Francisco issued a report Tuesday that says tenant relocation promises in the redevelopment of Parkmerced couldn’t legally be upheld if the owners of the neighborhood back out, and those living in 1,538 units slated for demolition are at risk of having to move elsewhere and lose rent-control rights.

The report recommends that the Board of Supervisors enact a law that protects the transitional tenants, no matter what firm conducts the redevelopment or ends up owning the finished product. The current development group — made up of the Fortress Investment Group and Stellar Management — has made it a point to promise repeatedly that the replacement units would be ready for tenants before demolition of their current units.

The report, titled “The Parkmerced Vision: Government-by-Developer,” says any future owner could legally challenge the agreement’s aspects of rent-control rights, rendering any particular agreement moot.

Some tenants have expressed grief that the new units could be in towers, unlike the current townhouse units that share community yards. The entire $1.2 billion development would be constructed over 20 to 30 years, and it seeks to add a net 5,700 living units and a better transit hub to the southwestern San Francisco World War II-era neighborhood.

dschreiber@sfexaminer.com

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Dan Schreiber

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