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Black and White and Red Tape All Over

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Original Design Proposal with Glazed Tile Facade [Rendering via DBA]
The Planning Commission recently issued a smack down to the Planning Department, voting unanimously to overturn the Department's objection to the façade color of a new residential building planned for 344 Fulton. The project will replace a surface parking lot in Hayes Valley with a Boys' and Girls' Club and a little housing thrown in. Architects David Baker + Partners' design for the building proposed a striking dark glazed tile facade at the corner of Fulton and Gough that would accent the otherwise light-colored building.

The Requested (and Rejected) Design Alternative [Rendering via DBA]
Baker explained to Curbed that Planning Department didn't like the way the building framed the view of City Hall down Fulton, since the building its dark and City Hall is white. Baker tactfully noted that the Department seemed to be making "some questionable leaps in logic" and may have been simply searching for a reason to reject the design.

The architects dutifully issued a new rendering showing the vanilla option, and risked pissing off the Planning Department by taking it directly to the community and the Planning Commission. Upon viewing the new rendering, the Hayes Valley Neighborhood Association (HVNA) "went bonkers" (in a bad way) and, given its decision to overturn the Planning Department's verdict, the Commission seemed to be similarly underwhelmed. The real question is why anyone should have to ask the Planning Department what color the corner of a building should be in the first place. If everyone had to agree on the appropriate color for every house in San Francisco, that would make for a whole lot of peeling paint. - Laura Tepper
From Parking Lot to Boys and Girls Club (With a Little Housing Thrown In) [CurbedSF]
334 Fulton Street [David Baker Architects]:
Planning Commission OKs Car-Free Housing at Fulton and Gough [SF Streetsblog]