We never felt like we ever had anything in common with real estate developers — they’re rich, we’re not, they’re owners of property, we’re not, so on and so on. You know.

But it does appear we have something in common with the developers of 1250 Missouri St, the four-story, 53,000-square foot self-titled “commercial condominium complex”-in-the-making, which could be yours for a bargain basement $9 million.

According to watchful neighbors, said developers subscribe to the school of, “When you first don’t get what you want, try and try again — and when that fails, say ‘Fuck em, I’ll do what I want'”. Hey, so do we!

And if it worked for us in sixth grade, when time and again we found where the Super Nintendo was hidden (why the folks didn’t just throw it away, we will never know but are forever grateful) — why wouldn’t it work when allegedly building illegal residential units in somewhat-roughneck, legally industrial-only areas of San Francisco (which just so happened to be ground zero for the dotcom-era live-work battle) where residential units are expressly prohibited, after being told not to, several times? Indeed.

The story of 1250 Missouri Street begins the heady days of 1999, when live/work lofts were sprouting like Miner’s Lettuce all over town. After asking to build more live/works and receiving a “Hell, no,” from Planning, developers got the green light to build a multistory commercial condominium complex, i.e. an office building. And build they did.
All seemed well until 2007, when a neighbor, curious as to what a parade of bathtubs, toilets and kitchen appliances going into the building meant, asked the subcontractor putting in the appliances, “What’s all this??” The subcontractor said, “Oh — housing,” and — well. You know.
A quick look at the plans — available in the handy-dandy informational brochure — reveal what appear to be stovetop ranges as well as full baths, and the conveniently-provided photos in said brochure do cry more “Nice place you’ve got here, yes let’s get naked,” than they do “Nice office, now how the hell do I get out of here.”

According to Tony Kelly, president of the Potrero Boosters, “what you’ve got here is a slimy developer trying to pull a live-work scam just like in 1999-2000, abetted by [city] staff who have been inattentive, superficial, and slow to enforce the law and Planning Commission decisions, in completely unsurprising ways to anyone who follows land use issues in the city.”


So what’ll it be, 1250 Missouri St? Live? Work? Live/work? Live, work, foreclose, rezone? We all want to know, and we’ll find out around 1 p.m. today.

Earlier in the day, a big cool glass of federally-funded water will be dumped all over everyone’s biggest burning question: just how is Healthy San Francisco doing? A grant totaling a cool $250k could pay for a full checkup of the program’s well-being (must be nice for a change!) from now until 2010. In a neat coincidence, the length of the study is about as long as we’d expect to wait for the free care at a city clinic, hoping to score a band-aid from the last nurse left in town.

What: City Operations and Neighborhood Services Committee
When: 10:30 AM
Where: Room 263

What: Land Use & Economic Development Committee
When: 1 PM
Where: Room 263

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