Wow, Genentech Is A NIMBY

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I can see both sides’ arguments. I recognize the need for housing, but I would prefer if they keep the residential area to the west of Hwy 101. The area east of Hwy 101 has always been industrial and just isn’t set up for residential use. As an example, where are they going to house the elementary school to service this area?

There are several biotech campuses being built right now in SSF. But we have to compete vigorously with the up-and-coming Cambridge/Boston cluster (which is already eclipsing SSF on several key measures like biotech VC funding) by providing high quality & affordable lab/office space to attract the biotech upstarts.

Come on, how does Emeryville’s biotech area cope with the residential side nearby? Or, is it just not as many units as being proposed here? I don’t know, I wonder if Genentech wants the property for itself…

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I am not sure Genentech is the entity opposing this. It’s the local biotech trade group in SSF that’s opposing residential use in the Oyster Point area.

I work in the area, walk along the Oyster Point bay trails depicted here regularly, and are quite excited by all the bustling biotech developments happening in the area. Genentech’s campus is closer to the Grand Ave exit (along with Pfizer, Verily aka Google [x] Life Sciences, and soon Merck). The Oyster Point area has Amgen, AstraZeneca/MedImmune, 23andme (therapeutics division), and a very large collection of small to mid-size biotechs. As such, I am not sure Genentech itself would gain or lose much if SSF allows residential housing on Oyster Point.

I do take your point that it is possible to have mixed office / residential use, as the biotech microclusters nearby UCSF Mission Bay campus and UC Berkeley / Emeryville demonstrate such feasibility. However, these microclusters are quite small compared to the SSF cluster, likely because these two other alternatives are land constrained (exactly the scenario this biotech trade group want to avoid). Many biotech upstarts, once they reach a certain size, will leave their incubators at UCSF Mission bay or at UC Berkeley (e.g. QB3 garages) and move to SSF for the availability of quality office/lab space. The availability of abundant office/lab space at SSF is one way to ensure that SF Bay Area remains one of the two mega biotech epicenters in the US (the other being Cambridge, MA).

Again, I can see the merits on both sides of the argument. I just wanted to provide an alternative explanation that may not strictly be due to NIMBYism.

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