Tenants at mid-Market complex sue landlord over evictions 

click to enlarge 1049 Market St.
  • Evan Ducharme/2013 S.f. Examiner file photo
  • The six-story building at 1049 Market St. is zoned for commercial offices, but has been used as below-market-rate housing since the 1990s. Eleven evicted tenants say the owner is using a 2007 citation as an excuse to oust residents.
Eleven tenants of a mid-Market Street apartment building embroiled in an eviction struggle have filed a lawsuit against their landlord.

The residents of 1049 Market St. — a six-story building of live-work lofts that has captured the attention of Mayor Ed Lee as well as tenant advocates — charge that the building’s owner is using a 2007 notice of violation as an excuse to evict them in order to capitalize on The City’s skyrocketing rental market, according to a lawsuit filed Wednesday in San Francisco Superior Court.

The building, which is zoned for commercial offices but has housed tenants since the 1990s, is seen as one of the last vestiges of below-market-rate housing in the rapidly gentrifying mid-Market corridor that City Hall has pushed to make a haven for the tech industry.

The building’s owners were reportedly cited for violating housing code requirements regarding light and air circulation in 2007, but no enforcement action was taken.

This past fall, many of the tenants were served with eviction notices by the landlord, who wanted to perform demolition work to convert the lofts into offices.

That demolition permit was revoked by The City following an outcry by residents. A hearing on the complex’s future is scheduled for February.

An attorney for the tenants did not provide comment by press time.

About The Author

Chris Roberts

Chris Roberts

Chris Roberts has worked as a reporter in San Francisco since 2008, with an emphasis on city governance and politics, The City’s neighborhoods, race, poverty and the drug war.
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