San Francisco 2020

By Barbara Tannenbaum, San Francisco Magazine

My first inkling that the mental map I carry of San Francisco’s eastern side was sorely outdated came one afternoon when I was driving into the city from a meeting on the Peninsula. I missed the freeway turnoff to Highway 101 and sighed as I headed down the 280 spur that lets out on King Street—the forsaken edge of the city, I thought. Except for AT&T Park, a whole lotta nothing. Maybe I’ll drive up to Mariposa and Third and grab a bite to eat at the Ramp.

When you are expecting to drive past weedy lots and railroad tracks, with all the clamor and activity coming from seagulls flying over mothballed battleships, what appears near the end of 280 today is shocking. Buildings—lots of them!—frame the skyline. Mid-rise condos—lots of them!—line the neighborhood around King Street. Chain stores including Safeway, Starbucks, Quizno’s, and Borders fill the ground-level retail space. There’s a library next door to the Fourth Street Bridge; two more grocery stores on Townsend and Harrison streets; and a few blocks farther south, soon after you cross the Third Street Bridge, a UCSF campus with shuttle buses already dropping students off for class. On King Street, as well as the still-uncompleted Owens Street, a few firms specializing in biotech and scientific research, with impressive names such as the Gladstone Institute of Virology and Immunology and the California Institute for Regenerative Medicine (the stem-cell research center), have opened for business.

In fact, stand anywhere south of Mission Street from the Embarcadero all the way to the water’s edge at Mission Bay, and you will hear the high-pitched clang of pile drivers. Look up as you walk the long blocks south of Market, and you’ll see cranes lifting steel I-beams and half-finished high-rises poking through the skyline, especially on Rincon Hill. The noise, the cranes and bulldozers, and the large signs advertising condominiums for sale announce the metamorphosis in progress. Whole new neighborhoods are being created out of a two-mile-long swath of San Francisco that once held rail yards, freeway on-ramps, and port facilities.

This is the biggest physical change San Francisco has seen since the great 1906 earthquake and fire. Moving south from the new high-rise heaven around Rincon Hill, over Highway 101 through South Beach, down to the ballpark and into the enormous, almost-instant community of Mission Bay, this emerging submetropolis near the waterfront will eventually have the density of Manhattan, with 30,000 residents and a workday population of at least 36,000. Think of it as an Upper East Side neighborhood on the West Coast.

In some ways, this new city-within-the-city makes no sense. The redevelopment zones that make it up weren’t planned cohesively; the neighborhoods are disrupted by massive freeways and off-ramps; and the new buildings—glass-encased, devoid of history, mostly tall and slender—won’t feel like the San Francisco the world fawns over. If you think the city is already going to hell in a handbasket because of the outrageous real estate market, the mallification of Market Street, and the loss of middle-class families and jobs, then you will view this as more of the same shiny blight.

If, on the other hand, you believe that the city is part of a churning commercial globe and has to make the best of it, be heartened or at least undespairing. San Francisco is creating out of long-ignored land and with heavy-handed tinkering a new downtown that employs more people, offers more services, provides more housing, and proudly extends the skyline even as it—dare we hope?—maintains its soul.

The neighborhood with the most visionary plans is around the Transbay Terminal at First and Mission. That grimy, seismically unsafe structure, built in 1939 for railroad traffic and then poorly modified to serve bus passengers, is at the heart of a $4 billion, world-class makeover. The centerpiece will be what planners are calling a Grand Central Station of the West—a downtown hub for bus, train, and subway traffic. This month a nine-member group will narrow its choices for an inspired architect and conversation-starting design for the transit center and a landmark tower on what is now the front entrance and bus turnaround.

The area around the transit center will eventually contain up to 10,000 residents in 15 to 20 more high-rises, creating a neighborhood roughly the size of North Beach but twice as dense with people. Since many of the high-rises must be “multi-use,” 190,000 square feet will be set aside for ground-floor retail space. In another city, that would be two Wal-Marts.

Where will the $4 billion come from? Conveniently, Caltrans owns those elevated bus ramps leading onto and off the Bay Bridge. They’re scheduled for demolition, and Caltrans is giving the newly exposed land to the city. The parcels will be available to developers, with more than 80 percent zoned exclusively for residential use. That’s 12 acres of cleared streetscape that will generate the funds for construction.

Why did all this get approved in one of the most growth-averse cities in the world? Let’s start with the obvious: the city’s chronically undersupplied housing market. Just a fraction of the homes for sale in San Francisco are affordable to a family making less than $100,000 a year. Addto that the fact that by 2020 another 1 million people are expected to move to the Bay Area. City planners know these numbers by heart. That’s why they changed the rules governing building heights and zoning laws to encourage developers to build residential towers.

But not just anywhere. Remember Proposition M? Back in 1986, city residents voted to encourage building high-rises south of Market Street, thus avoiding neighborhoods such as North Beach, Nob Hill, Russian Hill, and the Castro. Once former mayor Willie Brown succeeded in pushing the development plans through in 1998, the high-rise terrain included Mission Bay. “Prop. M was a line in the sand,” says Gabriel Metcalf, executive director of the San Francisco Planning + Urban Research Association, or SPUR. “There was no other place left to build.”

Long the city’s light-industrial district, SoMa has been changing fast for two decades, and the pace is accelerating. Over on Third Street, the Moscone Center, Yerba Buena Center for the Arts, SFMOMA, and even the W Hotel and the St. Regis Hotel and Residences—part of a 30-year-long Redevelopment Agency project—became potent examples of the rebirth of city centers as cultural draws, no longer sites of decay but attractive alternatives to the commuter-oriented suburbs. During the dot-com boom, remodeled warehouses, commercial loft spaces, and cafés with free Wi-Fi transformed SoMa beyond the museum zone. Meanwhile, the renewal edged toward the water. In South Beach, a mix of historic rehabilitation, mixed-income housing, and waterfront redevelopment created a neighborhood of 6,400 residents.

Closer to downtown, the focus in the Transbay/Rincon Hill area was initially on office space: office rents were so high, everyone wanted to build and cash in on it. After the dot-com bust and 9/11, the commercial market collapsed and the buildings never went up. But when the housing market took off, developers turned their attention to residential space.

By then, building single-family dwellings farther and farther away from cities was becoming less and less tenable to anyone worried about traffic, pollution, and sprawl. The developers’ dreams coincided with the growing acceptance of “infill,” or the New Urbanism, which advocates developing high- and mid-rise residences in city centers, with good public transportation and all the necessities for living nearby.

So, just as in South Beach, the next generation of city dwellers will live in residential towers. “The fight over high-rise development on San Francisco’s east side is over,” Richard Walker, a professor of geography at UC Berkeley and author of The Country in the City: The Greening of the San Francisco Bay Area, says flatly. “You can’t leave this land empty.”

In the city as a whole, 25,000 to 30,000 condo units are currently planned, proposed, or under way, an astounding number in a city whose population has hardly changed in 50 years. The vast majority will be located south of Market. Rincon Hill/Transbay will have 300 units per acre—twice as many as on Nob or Russian Hill. Such high-density developments are embraced by groups such as the Sierra Club, Greenbelt Alliance, and SPUR as “smart growth.”

As per the New Urbanism, these new hoods will also be job hubs. Estimates call for 36,000 new jobs, mostly in Mission Bay, in the commercial life-science labs and biotech companies and at UCSF; the office towers and all the new stores and services will need workers, too. San Francisco lost 60,000 jobs in the ’90s when the high cost of living drove corporate headquarters to places like San Ramon. This boom could replace half of them.

The end point, when the new neighborhoods have taken on the shape and texture suggested in the blueprints, is roughly 2020. Until then, there will be much not to like: too much construction and traffic, too few locally owned stores, too few kids, too many sterile, empty streets to trudge down without finding a cab.

But if we nail the epic public-transit aspect of the plan—the linchpin that makes everything else fit into place—if we demand creativity from developers and responsibly spend the multimillion dollar fees they’re paying, if we enable the quirks that make neighborhoods great, who knows? If every condo owner, worker, merchant, and restaurateur claims his or her ground with the passion of a native, the new downtown could become a shining example of 21st-century urban life.

The Architecture

It’s a big bet on high-rises—actually, one high-rise.

These transformed, postindustrial neighborhoods will have the power to certify the promise of infill development. Success shouldn’t be measured by how original the buildings are. As Peter Calthorpe of Berkeley’s Cal­thorpe Associates, an urban planner and architect and the influential author of The Regional City and The Next American Metropolis, says, “Cities are made out of a fabric of background buildings that are modest and straightforward and do a decent job of maintaining the activity of the street. Only certain structures should be monuments.” As of now, the city has a chance of getting both the fabric and the monument right.

The common outline will be narrow, glass-encased, 30-plus-story buildings with adjoining four-story townhouses. That’s just right, says architect Craig Hartman, a partner in the San Francisco firm Skidmore, Owings & Merrill who designed the St. Regis and the innovative, energy-efficient new international terminal at SFO. “A taller, more slender tower can be less harmful than a slightly lower but broader building that casts a broad shadow,” Hartman says.

Adds Peter Cohen, a local community planner, “This new generation of urban designers is being diligent about scale, protecting views, and reducing shadows and wind tunnels so that we won’t end up with a big, clumsy city in 10 or 15 years.”

Similarly, the decisions to put high-rises on Rincon Hill and mid-rises in Mission Bay make design sense because Rincon Hill (unlike many parts of the city) is on bedrock and Mission Bay is on landfill. Mission Bay’s parking garages—which fail the New Urbanist paradigm by being aboveground—are defensible, too, because the high water table left planners no choice, and the architects have mostly done a good job of hiding them.

As for a monument, the designated showstopper is the Transbay Transit Center and adjoining tower. Already approved to be 550 feet high, the tower could rise to more than 1,000 feet, making it the tallest building on the West Coast (unless Renzo Piano’s five controversial “bamboo shoot” towers for the corner of First and Mission, two of them even taller and thinner than anything envisioned yet, are approved). In the group selecting the architect, no adventuresome names jump out—a sustainable-space expert? An architecture critic from the Boston Globe?—which makes me wonder if they’ve been chosen for their caution. I hope not. To announce that this new downtown is worth caring about, the megabuilding must be special. Everyone recognizes that the transportation paradigm needs a dramatic shift; this one building could inspire boldness and sorely needed optimism.

No matter which award-laden architect wins the Transbay Transit Center commission, we are going to see two kinds of high-rises march toward each other and stand shoulder to shoulder at Mission Street. The elegant, slender residential towers will rise high above last century’s bulkier skyscrapers.

The new hoods won’t look like the rest of the city. But homes in the Richmond look different from those in Noe Valley, which aren’t like those in the Mission or the Presidio. Great cities have a character and purpose that arise from different eras. These are the first neighborhoods of the smart-growth 21st century.

Getting Around

Wouldn’t a “transit-first” policy have put the transit first?

Environmental groups see green in high-density urban living because the more people in a city center, the less traffic and global-warming-causing exhaust in the region as a whole. Hence, the plan for a three-part, multibillion dollar public transportation program that would turn this part of the city into a car-free paradise.

Here is what’s supposed to happen: Commuters to Silicon Valley will sell their cars once Caltrans extends the South Bay–San Francisco rail line from Fourth and King into the new transit center. Mission Bay residents will use the light rail running along Third Street between the financial district and Bayview–Hunters Point or the subway linking Mission Bay, SoMa, the financial district, and Chinatown. The high-speed train connecting the city to Los Angeles and Sacramento will allow those who fled to the Central Valley or beyond San Jose to come back to work or shop and leave their cars at home.

It’s a remarkable plan, but it’s also as futuristic as it sounds. The Third Street light rail is here now, with full weekday service due to start in April. But Caltrans won’t bring passengers into the new downtown for almost a decade, since it won’t even break ground until 2012. If voters approve a new bond measure in two years, construction of the bullet train could begin in 2010. The Municipal Transit Agency, which runs Muni, predicts that the central subway will be complete by 2016, but I wouldn’t take any bets on that.

Meanwhile, the city and the high-rise developers aren’t about to let people spend $2 million for a luxury condo without a parking space. While city regulations decree that the towers get only one space for every two dwellings, the city is granting exceptions provided the developer separates the sale of the condo and the parking space. Most buyers are accepting the additional fee ($75,000 at the Infinity).

Still, the parking must be “non-independently acces­sible.” That means you cannot jump in your car when the whim strikes. You will call a valet who will retrieve it from a space-saving mechanical stacking device. The theory is that this will prove so onerous, you’ll say, Forget it; I’ll take the bus (or walk, or take a cab). But for the first 10,000 or 20,000 new residents, the morning gridlock will start on the telephone to the garage attendant and continue out to the street.

Once there, where will anyone park? SoMa’s once-plentiful lots are disappearing under the new towers. Peter Calthorpe says, “There should be no such thing as surface parking lots in San Francisco. There are very few absolutes in the world, and that’s one of them. You don’t give up rare and valuable urban space to cars.” Nice point, unless you have to live in the gap between theory and reality.

“This is not Manhattan,” says Ellen Ullman, computer programmer turned author (Close to the Machine, The Bug), who lives in South Beach’s Clocktower. “I know. I broke my foot recently and had to hobble around on crutches. There were hardly any cabs, and those that came took forever. And if I have to go out at night, I don’t want to walk to Market Street and get a streetcar. Women at night might need a car.” So might seniors and the disabled, and all of us on a windy, rainy night.

It’s great that San Francisco has a “transit-first” policy. Let’s hope the city has the cash when it comes time to expand the system. In the meantime, city hall should direct the San Francisco Taxicab Commission to issue more medallions, thus putting more taxis on the street.

Diversity

Middle class squeezed again.

With costs ranging from $450,000 for a studio to $2 million for a four-bedroom condo with luxe amenities, the new neighborhoods will largely be home to people of means: wealthy out-of-towners in a second home, young couples and singles with high-paying jobs, fly-by executives. Most people will be moving in from out of town, not traveling up from another neighborhood.

Rincon/Transbay in particular could be a neighborhood for jet-setters. Young urban professionals are buying some of the studios and one-bedroom units; after all, the price is the same as a house in Antioch, and there’s no commute. But in a city where 65 percent of the residents rent their flats or apartments, and the median household income is $57,500, how many families can or want to buy a two-bedroom condo in a district lacking schools and green space? Already, according to Foresight Analytics, an Oakland-based consulting firm, more than half of the current luxury-condo buyers in the city are empty nesters over 50, and most of the rest are investing in their second (or third) home. No surprise here. Across the country, the rich are coming back to live in city condos, middle-class families are leaving, and the poor are struggling where they stand. Demand is driven more by the strength of international stock markets than by local headlines about the need for affordable housing.

Still, the city and various agencies are demanding that affordable housing be built. Because the land will come from state-owned Caltrans parcels, Transbay’s high-rises will offer “below market” rates on at least 35 percent of the new housing, though we’ll see what that really means. (For more on the ins and outs of affordable housing, see our website, www.sanfranmag.com.) Mission Bay will have students, designated affordable units, a children’s playground, a children’s hospital, middle and elementary schools, and a library—the new downtown’s only schools and library. From that, we can deduce a pretty diverse group of people will live in its mid-rise condos. But on Rincon Hill, all the developers so far have opted to pay big bucks—or “in lieu” fees—to the mayor’s office of housing instead of building affordable housing on-site. That’s why Calvin Welch, an activist with San Francisco’s Council of Community Housing Organizations, calls the towers here “vertical gated communities.”

The condos will appeal to superrich part-time residents who drop in from Hong Kong or the East Coast: studies show that San Francisco’s newest real estate is a global bargain at $1,000 to $1,500 per square foot compared to $2,000 in New York, $2,300 in London, and $2,500 in Hong Kong. And it’s fair to worry that the luxury condo dwellers, with their pools, gyms, and concierges, will have every excuse to stay above city life. But as long as SFMOMA and other museums are a few blocks away and scores of fine restaurants eventually open nearby, the city streets below should just as easily become a magnet.

Street Life

Don’t expect Paris, but take a walk anyway.

The great cities of the world have an electricity. You don’t have to travel to London, Paris, or Tokyo in your mind’s eye to recognize that truth; think of your favorite parts of San Francisco. We don’t love North Beach for the food and coffee, Castro Street for the bars and movies, Clement Street or Stockton for the fresh-vegetable stands. It’s the whole mix they present: the myriad shops, pocket parks, surprising views, eye-catching signs, strollable streets, and people of different classes, cultures, interests, and ages. “One way to evaluate a city,” Peter Cohen says, “is as a social place, a place where people’s attachment to it gives it that buzz.”

Of course, it takes years for a Caffe Trieste or Castro Theatre, much less an entire neighborhood, to develop that draw. “It’s hard to make something out of nothing,” says David Baker of San Francisco’s David Baker + Partners Architects, who designed several of the buildings with affordable housing units in Mission Bay. “It will take years before Mission Bay, Rincon, and Transbay become real places. Character takes time.”

We can assume the new hoods won’t have the range of ages and classes you see in the rest of the city. Nor will they be as walker-friendly as a great neighborhood should be. Who can enjoy an evening stroll when traffic clogs the streets, commuters lean on their horns, and car exhaust perfumes the air? Take Mission Bay: King Street, which serves as both boundary and entrance, has six lanes of traffic, the 280 on-ramp, and the new light-rail Muni line running down the center. Then there’s SoMa’s daunting street grid, a legacy of its industrial past as a rail yard. Each block, at 550 feet, is longer than any other in the city. And everyone knows big residential towers can easily crowd and shadow sidewalk strollers. For instance, some of the towers that were approved before the latest guidelines went into effect don’t meet the sidewalk in an inviting way.

Even so, I’m cautiously optimistic. The brick warehouses and metalwork factories given landmark status and rehabilitated for use by restaurants, galleries, and offices should draw the dense population onto the streets here. Already it’s lovely to walk around First and Second streets and see a mixture of building ages, styles, and construction materials.

People will get out of their cars if they have someplace to go on foot. “Even public transit should be understood as a way to extend the pedestrian’s world rather than as an end in itself,” says Peter Calthorpe. “You don’t use public transit unless you can walk at the beginning of the trip and walk again at the end.” And that will be possible, unless the city fails to pressure developers or find the funds to make every possible improvement to the new downtown, from getting the transit built to putting up public art.

City planners and high-rise architects know these New Urbanist mantras. To increase neighborhood intimacy, the latest regulations require high-rises to have multiple entrances and old-fashioned stoops. The city will take away a lane of traffic on strategic streets such as Beale and Main and widen the sidewalks to make leafy, green linear parks. In the old industrial SoMa, short alleyways were punched out because it took too long for delivery trucks to drive around the block, and architects have recognized the design potential of these shortcuts, incorporating them as grassy pedestrian mews through the block-long high- and mid-rise developments adjoining Townsend and Brannan streets.

Already, alleyways such as Stillman Street and Guy Place in Rincon Hill feature beautiful touches such as wrought-iron balcony railings, artful metal sculpture, sundecks, and potted plants. These details soften a city’s edge. They are invisible to drivers but add to a walker’s sense of discovery. And they do arrive with time.

Stores & Retail

Give it up for your mom and pop.

People need small but essential services: hair salons and barbers, dry cleaners, florists, delis, shipping and copy shops. And in this city of immigrants and new arrivals, another set of people need small, affordable commercial spaces they can rent or lease to gain an economic toehold in the city. To create the diverse, lively neighborhoods everyone wants, the city should find ways to encourage affordable retail just as vigorously as it pursues affordable housing.New stores and places to eat have opened in Mission Bay along Berry, King, and Townsend streets, and with the single exception of Philz Coffee, around the corner from the Mission Bay branch library, each is a chain. Safeway, Borders, Amici’s pizza, Quizno’s—not exactly the cosmopolitan finds you’ll walk out of your way for.

“It’s a chicken-and-egg sort of thing,” says David Baker. “A developer creating a new neighborhood can go to the bank with a signed lease from Borders or Starbucks; the finance people call that a ‘bankable lease.’ A local firm needs to wait until the market arrives. I predict that once the new condo owners move in, they’ll start demanding things to make their neighborhood more amenable.”

But the city needs to weigh in, too. “Look at San Francisco airport,” says Baker. “I don’t know who, but someone made certain that a large number of locally owned restaurants (Ebisu, Deli Up, Yankee Pier, Emporio Rulli) were given space in the refurbished SFO.”

Yes, the airport is publicly owned, not a private development, and yet this policy has made it one of the most inviting places to wait for a plane in the country. The San Francisco Redevelopment Agency, which oversaw the changes at SFO and now oversees Mission Bay, should find a way to make this happen in the new downtown, even though its mandate is to build infrastructure, not to prod small retailers. Amy Neches, the agency’s project manager for Mission Bay, is so happy to see Philz Coffee there—“it is putting us on the map”—that I suspect she’d like to encourage more local business to move into the new hoods.

Open Space

Let the pocket parks flourish, because we’ll need them.

With new parks from the channel to the waterfront, Mission Bay could conceivably become a Crissy Field for the SoMa set; that’s how ambitious the plans are. Blueprints call for 49 acres for tennis, basketball, volleyball, dog runs, playgrounds, and even a kayak launch at the bay’s edge. Already near Mission Creek there’s an undulating gravel path, ornamental pear trees, and expanses of lawn on two parks with views of Twin Peaks and the East Bay hills. UCSF plans at least eight acres of landscaped public space and has unveiled the rolling oval common area behind the Ricardo Legorreta–designed community center. There are already plenty of nooks and crannies to explore. If the city can pull off the proposed 13-mile Blue Greenway from the ballpark to Candlestick Point, that will be the feather in its cap.Unfortunately, Transbay/Rincon Hill severely lacks green space and will require serious attention. Aside from block-long South Park, a remnant of pre-1906 Rincon Hill’s mansions and wealthy residents, every inch is crammed with buildings and warehouses. The antidote cooked up by planners is the transformation (starting in 2009) of Folsom Street between the Embarcadero and Second Street into a grand boulevard. It’s hard to imagine this forlorn speedway with one of its lanes turned into a 30-foot-wide linear park, hundreds of newly planted trees, and elegant shops, restaurants, and outdoor cafés. Whether that fantasy comes true, everyone—developers, residents, and agencies—must hunt for additional ways to create open space. Expect to see the tiny parking lot on Guy Place, tucked behind First Street between Folsom and Harrison, become the neighborhood’s first pocket park. And keep your fingers crossed that Caltrans turns its staging area next door to One Rincon Hill into a pocket park as well. As anyone who’s caught a quick lunch in the Tom Galli–designed Redwood Grove Park at the base of the Transamerica Pyramid can tell you, such a small achievement reaps skyscraper-size rewards.

The Spillover Effect

SoMa and the Bayview will never be the same.

Every one of SoMa’s 2,333 acres will be affected by the changes taking place between Mission Street and Mission Bay. Many building owners are getting unsolicited offers to buy their property, and you can assume that wherever you see a parking lot or two-story building, there could well be a high- or mid-rise tower in the next several years. There are people working on plans to upgrade a neighborhood they call SoMa East (the area between Fifth and Seventh streets, currently skid row). There are plans under review for SoMa West (that is, west of Yerba Buena Center for the Arts) and for the area around Showplace Square, below Division Street.

A critical issue over the short term is the status of the city’s many business services. Planners call it PDR: production, distribution, and repair. Today the long blocks of SoMa are filled with big asphalt lots housing Muni buses, Sunset Scavenger trucks, and fleets of taxis. Here you’ll find the heating and electrical and ventilation services, the elevator supply and repair shops. It’s where UPS and FedEx bring their packages from the airport and move them into delivery trucks. This is where the companies that service our thriving tourist economy operate, and it’s getting increasingly hard for them to find the space they need.

“These people can’t compete with the suede shoes who can sink $200 million into a high-rise,” says Calvin Welch. “If developers move in and buy up every low-rise garage, parking lot, and factory south of Market, there are going to be serious economic consequences.” Many of the people I talked to, including Peter Cohen and Ellen Ullman, consider this the next big problem. Once the parking lots disappear, will the blue-collar companies in low-slung buildings be next?

The city realized it couldn’t afford to lose a world-renowned teaching hospital like UCSF or fumble the plans for a new ballpark for the Giants. The PDR companies do not have as high a profile. But they need a protector. If we want them to stay—and we do—city officials are going to have to make their needs a priority, too. In its South Bayshore Survey Area, which encompasses Bayview–Hunters Point, the Redevelopment Agency promotes “new commercial/light industrial enterprises,” adding to what’s there, not getting rid of it.

Gentrification of the central waterfront just beyond Mission Bay—India Basin, Bayview, and Hunters Point—seems as certain as Britney Spears in the headlines. Starting around Mariposa and 16th streets, there are still acres of working ports, trucking centers, warehouses, and, in Hunters Point, inexpensive homes and buildings. As I drove these streets, stopping to explore Islais Creek and the tidy if somewhat frayed bars and homes of Dogpatch and Butchertown, I could imagine the developers eyeing them for future projects just as soon as Mission Bay gets built out. More business will be competing for less and less affordable real estate. This will be the next chapter in San Francisco’s transformation. Stay tuned.

This article is copyright 2007 by San Francisco Magazine