May 31, 2017

The “formerly SF homeless” may get a permanent home.

May 31, 2017

The “formerly SF homeless” may get a permanent home.

A federally owned surface parking lot behind the courthouse at Seventh and Mission streets would become the city’s largest housing development for formerly homeless people, under a proposal Mayor Ed Lee plans to introduce Tuesday.

The Mayor’s Office of Housing and Community Development is seeking the Board of Supervisors’ approval to enter into negotiations for the property with the Government Services Organization, which oversees federal property.

The parcel at 1068 Mission St., behind the landmark James R. Browning U.S. Courthouse that houses the U.S. Ninth Circuit Court of Appeals, could accommodate 250 housing units in two separate buildings, one of which would house formerly homeless seniors.

“We are always looking for avenues to help our residents off the streets and into homes,” said Lee. “This kind of opportunity does not come around often in San Francisco, and we need to work together to make sure this property is used to help those who need it most.”

Jeff Kositsky, director of the Department of Homelessness and Supportive Housing, said the project would “greatly improve the city’s ability to get people off the streets and back on their feet.”

“We know what works to end homelessness,” he said. “These additional new units of permanent supportive housing will move us closer to making homelessness in San Francisco rare, brief and nonrecurring.”

The city values the property at $35 million but is hoping the federal government will transfer it for $1, something it has done for homeless housing developments in Washington, D.C., and elsewhere. Under the McKinney-Vento Homeless Assistance Act enacted in 1987, federal properties must be considered for homeless services before other uses.

The larger of the two buildings, 85 feet tall, would face Mission Street and have 150 units of permanently supportive housing for formerly homeless single adults. A second 65-foot building would face Stevenson Alley and cater to formerly homeless seniors older than 62. Neither building would have parking.


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