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Cathedral Hill: It's Not Just About You

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It's no secret that California Pacific Medical Center want to move itself to Van Ness & Geary. But that's really the tip of the iceberg, and as usual, generating the most chat. The short version: CPMC, as required by law, is rebuilding itself to meet the most recent seismic requirements. They've taken this beyond a few steel supports and bolted foundations and re-thought their entire city-wide presence. St. Luke's in The Mission/Noe Valley gets replaced altogether with a new hospital in an existing parking lot, with fewer beds and more trauma capabilities. Davies in the Castro/Duboce Triangle gets turned into a neurosciences facility but pretty much remains a mix of beds, ambulatory care and ER, just with fewer beds. The California Avenue campus gets some upgrades, but is scheduled to vanish entirely in 2020. Pacific Heights gets more parking! And a few less beds, but keeps their ER. All those disappearing beds will wind up in a 500-plus patient bed mega-hospital spanning Van Ness where that much-degraded icon of Swinging San Francisco, the Jack Tar Hotel (aka Cathedral Hill Hotel) now stands. Probably with a heliport.

"Spanning" is not quite correct- actually there will be a tunnel under Van Ness from the hospital to doctor's offices on the east side of Van Ness. Along with the usual public transport issues, the comprehensive plan includes what were then (2008) proposed bike lanes and a review of other locations considered, including the Presidio (in 2002) and the MUNI bus barn at Geary and Masonic. The document must have cost millions and with the exception of pet-owners seems to have covered every possible voting bloc in town.

Last Thursday the Planning Commission held the first meeting for public comments. You can go straight to the video, but it's over six hours long, and that's with speakers allotted just three minutes each. No bathroom breaks. Actually, if you can spare the time, the first ten minutes or so of video are an illuminating glimpse into the public face of the Commission. CPMC is the city's second-largest private employer, and the project is game changer for health care here. Some people will care only about the loss of local facilities, others about shadows and streetscape. We won't give you three minutes, but feel free to fret extemporaneously in the comments.
· CMPC Long Range Development Plan [SF Planning, 6th Item]
· Video On Demand: Planning Commission [SFTV]
· CMPC 2008 Institutional Master Plan [Rebuild CMPC]
· CPMC Coverage on Curbed SF [Curbed SF Archives]
· Once Upon a Time, the Jack Tar Hotel Showed Us How it Was Done [Curbed SF Archives]