The gavel has dropped before the auction even started for a choice piece of real estate across from the Transbay Transit Center. The San Francisco Business Times reports that the event, scheduled for today, was suddenly called off by the Transbay Joint Powers Authority after potential developers expressed big concerns. It's expected that the site will fetch around $200 million, money that will be used to fund the construction of the transit center.
Now, the deal will be brokered in a more traditional way—in private. What are would-be buyers worried about? According to sources in the SFBT, it's all about entitlements (approved use) and the stock market. There's some amount of uncertainty around how the site can be developed (it does not have approvals yet) and whether builders would be allowed to bypass the city's office cap (it's unclear just how much office space could be built here). Add in another up-and-down week for global stock markets, and you have a bunch of jittery real estate investors.
That's not to say there won't be a lot of interest. After all, this is one of the last available lots available for high-rise development, and we all know how that's going. The Transbay Transit Center is scheduled to open in 2017.
· S.F. kills live auction for $200M Transbay highrise site, but here's who is bidding behind closed doors [San Francisco Business Times]
· At Last, the Transbay Transit Center Is Rising Above Ground [Curbed SF]
· Striking Photos of the Transbay Transit Center As It Begins Its Historic Rise [Curbed SF]