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Future is Nigh for Pyramid Center

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A day or so back, a reader wrote in to alert us that the redevelopment of Pyramid Center by Transamerica Pyramid owner Aegon Group has entered its pre-construction phase; an Environmental Impact Report is being conducted on the site right now, while 505 Sansome received its latest building permit just today. The proposed project will add 248 condo units and retail space to the site, while transforming Mark Twain Alley into a public piazza and opening up the redwood grove for public enjoyment. Our tipster isn't so happy with the height of the project: " The monstrosity would be about as tall," he quipped "Strangle this deformity in its crib, please." Enter an ensuing comment war over the proposed height of the project, which proposes a 38-story building that will require a variance to build beyond the site's current 200 foot limit. Omnipresent firm Heller Manus Architects are on for the design. Quoth Jeffrey Heller back in May, when the project was announced:

"One thing you sure don't want to do is mimic the Pyramid," said Heller. "The building could be glassier, but there is a strong feeling that we don't take attention away from the Transamerica."At a proposed height of over twice the current zoning allowance, and given Manus's hint at a taller, more slender building that won't compete with the TA, why don't we lay down a few bets about the future of Pyramid Center?
· Condos to rise beside Pyramid [SF Business Times]
· CurbedWire: Trouble Near Transamerica? [Curbed SF]