Monday, May 14, 2012

NO to 8 Washington

Dear Supervisors,

As President of the Harvey Milk Club, I write to join the growing chorus of housing and neighborhood advocates opposing the 8 Washington luxury condo project. We ask you to reject its flawed EIR and deny the precedent setting bonuses it got from Planning including a 62% increase in height, a doubling of bulk and quadrupling of parking. This might have been justified for affordable housing but these condos will sell for $2.5 to over $7.5 million each including not 1 or 2 but 7 penthouses.

This is not the kind of housing San Franciscans want or need. It is housing for the ½ of 1%. A lot of it will be second, third and fourth homes for millionaires. As you know from a recent report by your Budget Analyst, this is the one (and only) category of housing in San Francisco that is overbuilt. Why build more?

In addition to the obvious problems with this project, it would also:

• reward owners of the Golden Gateway (they own 80% of the 8 Washington site)
at the same time they’re converting many of their 1,254 rent-controlled apartments
to short-term hotel use, destroying the kind of housing we actually do need.

• allow the Port to divert $30 million of future City tax revenue to Port projects,
including giving the developer a $5 million city subsidy.

• create a 400-car underground garage for a project touted as “transit oriented”

• put 20,000 dump trucks on The Embarcadero, up to one every 2 minutes, to
remove 110,000 cubic yards of dirt to build an underground (underwater) garage.

• destroy an active recreation facility used by thousands of residents each year.

Finally, the developer wants you to believe that those who oppose this outrageous project are “just a few vocal neighbors” or “the rich fighting the very rich”. That is simply not true. I join with the SF Tenants Union, Housing Rights Committee, Senior Action Network, San Francisco Tomorrow, SF ACCE, Affordable Housing Alliance, the Golden Gateway Tenants Association, the SF Green Party, the Coalition for San Francisco Neighborhoods and many more in opposing this ugly, needless project.

Please join us.

Anna Conda/Glendon Hyde
President of the Harvey Milk LGBT Democratic Club

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