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S.F.’s Empty Offices Could Hold 11,000 New Homes

Could converting office buildings to housing help downtown SF’s recovery?
By - posted 3/31/2023 No Comment

Thanks to San Francisco Chronicle for sharing the news that the city’s empty office buildings could be converted to new homes.

San Francisco has thousands of empty office buildings that could be converted into housing, according to a new report. The report, released by the policy research group SPUR and the local chapter of the Urban Land Institute, estimates that more than 10,000 housing units could be created within the shells of older office buildings.

The reports say that the city should take steps to make it easier for developers to convert office buildings into housing. They suggest lowering development fees and affordable housing requirements. The city’s population has grown rapidly in recent years, but the supply of new housing has not kept up. This has led to soaring rents and homelessness.

The structures that are the most promising candidates for conversion, according to the summary, are high-rises where the upper floors are no more than 20,000 square feet, roughly equal to the towers of One Market Plaza at the foot of Market Street.

Converting office buildings into housing could help to alleviate the city’s housing crisis. They say that it would create new housing units without the need to build new construction.

Read more about the story at the San Francisco Chronicle or read the full report here.