NIMBYs in SF demanded a smaller building—the developer made it bigger

Last year, DM Development announced plans to build a 290-unit building in the Potrero Hill neighborhood. The project was within walking distance of tech giants like Airbnb and Uber and featured dorm-style units that could be perfect for young, single tech workers.

Potrero Hill residents demanded that the project be scaled back—perhaps reduced from seven stories to six. But DM Development didn’t give an inch.

“Instead of bending to the neighbors’ wishes and dropping the height of the project, DM Development went in the opposite direction, increasing the proposed 80-foot building to 120 feet, and raising the original 290 units to 450 units,” the San Francisco Chronicle’s J.K. Dineen writes.

DM Development CEO Mark MacDonald said he submitted the bigger plan after “it was abundantly clear to us the neighbors were not supportive of the lower scale project.” He added that “if we had gotten support for the original plan we would have kept going down that path.”

50 years of nimbyism coming home to roost.

Are you guys cheering this as a good outcome, or bemoaning it?

There is no outcome, yet. But it amazes me me how long it takes to get any project approved and built during the biggest housing shortage in history. Any delay means higher costs and less units built over time. After fighting nimbyies for 40 years, I gave up long ago. Imagine how much housing Doelger built.

How many houses were built in the 50s and 60s.
I had one colleague build 1800 homes in one year in the San Carlos hills in 1952. Now it takes 2 years to build one house. Of course we didn’t have any opposition then. Now there are the nimbyies EPA EIR sewer and water shortages . Traffic concerns. Global Warming. And a million other negative voices

No, changes are coming. After decades of NIMBYism running wild Californians are finally saying enough is enough. As we see in this case SB35 is incredibly powerful. Developers can say to the NIMBYs eff you I am building a bigger project not smaller.

Sounds promising. But the nimbyies lawyers will tie up any project for years. Zoning is only one of there many arrows in their quiver. The real problem is building officials that think it’s their job to make building as expensive and time consuming as possible. They actually think they are protecting the public. But they are in fact the biggest cause of homelessness in America.
Rules regulations and procedures become more important than common sense. Most projects that could be approved over the counter takes months of plan check and redesign.

Again, inept workman blaming the tools (zoning laws).