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What's Up With the Richard Meier Project at One Van Ness?

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One Van Ness designed by Richard Meier [Photo: SPUR]

From the Curbed inbox:

Any updates on the Richard Meier & Partners tower at 1 Van Ness? I have my fingers crossed that this one gets built, but one never knows in SF.Designed by starchitect Richard Meier, the One Van Ness (or 1510-1540 Market Street) project was first proposed back in 2009 with environmental review finally getting underway in 2012. It's a massive mixed-use residential tower on a very prominent corner. Last we looked, it was under environmental review - so what's the status now? The proposed project right smack at the corner of Van Ness and Market would be a big one - a 400' residential tower with 180 dwelling units and 50 parking spaces, and one 65' building connected by pedestrian bridge at the third floor housing three ground-floor commercial spaces, Conservatory of Music space, and residential amenity uses. There'd also be work to spruce up Oak Street north of the site with decorative paving, benches and landscaping.

Things are moving at a glacial pace, but the project is under review at the Planning Department. Looks like it's already been scaled back a bit (initial proposals called for 435' height and 258 dwelling units). There were big concerns about wind speeds on the busy corner, and for a while wind effects were dictating creation of a design that would meet the wind requirements. It was a backwards approach, with a partner from Meier's office stating, "It may look horrible, but let's see if we can reverse the process and turn it into a building." Now the building is designed with articulated facades on lower levels that would allow wind to pass through open sections, and a wind screen structural feature on the Oak Street side. Since it's located right in the middle of a building boom area, there have to be some pretty comprehensive analyses on wind and shadow impacts - not only of this project, but also considering the other proposed projects cumulatively.

Map of proposed and future developments at Market and Van Ness [Photo: SPUR]

So to answer our reader's request for updates...there aren't too many to report. But the project is definitely working its way through environmental review and hasn't fallen off the radar yet.
· Market and Van Ness: The Winds of Change [SPUR]
· Notice of Preparation of an Environmental Impact Report - 1510-1540 Market Street (pdf) [SF Planning]
· Section 309 Review and Request for Exceptions (pdf) [SF Planning]
· In San Francisco, Life Without 'Starchitects' [NY Times]
· Richard Meier & Partners tower planned in S.F. [SF Gate]