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Developer Doubles BMR Housing for 16th and Mission Project

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As developer Maximus Real Estate Partners prepares for tonight's public forum about its controversial proposed new apartment building at 1979 Mission Street, it has released an outside-the-box new plan to increase the number of below-market-rate (BMR) units offered along with the development. Previous announcements about the site had called for 12 percent of the building's units to be reserved as BMR, a figure right around what's required by law. Now, as the San Francisco Business Times reports, Maximus is proposing to build 290 market-rate apartments on-site, with an additional 41 on-site units that will be offered up for sale to middle-class households making between $61,000 and $145,650. Those units will be sold for between $280,000 and $350,000. Another 49 BMR rentals will be built off-site at a still-to-be-determined location in the Mission and rented out to people making between 30 percent and 55 percent of the city's median income.

Antidisplacement activists led by a coalition called Plaza16 have been vocally opposing the 16th and Mission project since it was first announced, referring to it as the "Monster in the Mission" and claiming that it will change the character of the area around the 16th and Mission BART station. The new proposal from Maximus comes in response to those concerns but uses some new methods to increase the amount of BMR housing provided.

The on-site units for middle class buyers would be sold at higher rates than the law mandates for BMR sales. The $12.3 million from those sales would then be used by Maximus to pay for the off-site affordable rentals. The developer has also promised to improve the 16th and Mission BART plaza, increasing its size by 40 percent, and to build a new playground for Marshall Elementary School next door. There will also be a "mercado" built as retail space for local businesses and artists. Plaza16 hasn't issued an official response to the new plans, but given that its demands call for Maximus to abandon the project and transfer the land to community hands, the organization will likely not be satisfied with the developer's revised proposal.

Tonight's community meeting will take place at 6 p.m. at Laborers' Local 261 Union Hall, 3721 3271 18th Street (near Shotwell).

· 16th and Mission Developer Pitches Unconventional Plan to Expand Affordable Housing [SF Business Times]
· Renderings Released for Controversial Rentals at 16th, Mission [Curbed SF]
· Mission Developer Puts 90 Units of Affordable Housing in Proposal [SFGate]
· Vision/Demands [Plaza16]