MX3 cites new law to supersize project in SF’s Mission District

MX3 Ventures has torn up plans for a 60-unit apartment building in San Francisco for new plans for a 164-unit tower in the Mission District.

The Newport Beach-based developer led by Manouch Moshayedi has filed revised plans under a new state density bonus law for the 11-story building at 344 14th Street, the San Francisco Chronicle reported. It would replace a parking lot.

After five years, Moshayedi won approval in 2019 for a seven-story building with 60 apartments, including eight affordable units, across the street from the historic Armory building.

His new plans call for an 11-story highrise with 164 apartments, including 99 studio units, with ground-floor shops and restaurants. The 117-foot building will set aside 26 apartments as affordable for low- and middle-income households.

The larger building conforms to a new state law that allows developers to build taller with more housing units in exchange for more affordability, according to the Chronicle.

Initial plans by MX3 called for a 78-foot-tall building made possible by a state density bonus that allowed up to 50 percent greater density and height in exchange for the affordable units. The site is zoned for 58 feet.

Assembly Bill 1287, enacted this year, doubles that bonus — allowing a second 50 percent density increase if 15 percent of the units are set aside as affordable for households earning 120 percent of area median income.

The MX3 development is the second approved project in San Francisco to use AB 1287 to add stories. Last month, the developer of a controversial condo tower at 955 Sansome Street at the bottom of Telegraph Hill revised the height to 24 stories, from 16, upsetting neighbors.

Robin Baral, an attorney with San Francisco-based Hanson Bridgett, expects the city will see more developers revise projects according to the double-bonus law.

“There seems to be a moderate income sweet spot,” Baral, referring to a developer’s ability to secure financing for construction, told the Chronicle. “I am seeing a lot of developers of existing projects who are looking at potentially revising their applications.”

Last year, Mayor London Breed backed legislation that cut out many hearings that tie up proposed developments for months or years.

This means MX3’s larger project may not be subject to further public hearings or appeals, like in the past — “depending on other required entitlements,” a spokesperson for the Planning Department told the newspaper.

MX3 Ventures bought the parking lot at 344 14th Street in 2015 for $4.8 million. Last year, the firm considered selling the approved project site for $18 million, according to a Mission District advocate.

— Dana Bartholomew

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