Letter of support from
Barbary Coast Neighborhood Association
to the San Francisco Planning Department

Planning Commission
1660 Mission Street, Suite 500
San Francisco, CA 94103 Via Fax: 558-6409

RE: Appeal of Mitigated Negative Declaration
for Project 2003.1183E: 55 Francisco St. (aka 1789 Montgomery St.)

  I write on behalf of the newly created Barbary Coast Neighborhood—approximately 8,000 people who live and work in the neighborhoods adjacent to the proposed development at 55 Francisco Street.
  We oppose the mitigated negative declaration (MND) for the proposed development at 55 Francisco Street and support the MND appeal by our neighbors who reside in the area surrounding the proposed project. We urge the Planning Commission to require the developer to undertake a full Environmental Impact Report.
  We support the need for a full EIR for the following reasons:
• The MND fails to take the total effect on parking, traffic and density of surrounding projects into account, such as the Port developments that are in the initial planning phase in the northern waterfront (e.g., the Exploratorium, Piers 27-311/2).

• The MND does not consider the impact on open space. Our neighborhood is one of the densest areas of the city and has the least amount of open space. An EIR would assess the burden on the limited, existing open space.

• The MND does not consider the impact of the demolition and construction period on local residents and businesses.

• Most importantly, the MND does not address the lack of a community planning process for this project in spite of attempts by the neighborhood to engage the developer. Clearly, this project will directly and indirectly cause serious adverse effects on the senior, low-income and disabled residents of Wharf Plaza I/II. Mitigation measures have not been discussed adequately with the community and neighborhood residents most impacted by this project.

•   The Planning Department’s own “Better Neighborhood” Program proposes to “refine citywide goals to the needs of neighborhoods” through an intensive community-based planning process and to create plans that “improves the neighborhood where possible while supporting what’s already working well.” We commend the Planning Department for these efforts to improve our neighborhoods. However, a MND for the 55 Francisco development is counter to the Planning Department’s own principles.
•   The Barbary Coast Neighborhood Association is not opposed to development on this site. However, we are opposed to developments that do not consider the full impact on the surrounding neighborhood.
•   Thank you for your consideration.
•     Sincerely,

•     Fred Allardyce, President
•     Barbary Coast Neighborhood Association

• cc: Aaron Peskin, Supervisor, District 3