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Bid to Turn Short-Term Vacation Rentals into a Hotel Denied

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Word this morning that the San Francisco Planning Commission has denied an owner's request to convert the building she had long been leasing as vacation rentals into a hotel. The SF Planning Commission unanimously rejected the request, saying in their recommendation that allowing the building to be a hotel would "remove three rent-controlled units from the market" and that could "exacerbate the current housing crisis."

A Bay City News report carried by The San Francisco Appeal says that Jennifer Solomon, the owner of the units in question at 40-44 Pleasant St. on Nob Hill, applied for a permit to use the property as a hotel after the Planning Department told her she was operating against codes. The report says she claimed to have operated the building as vacation rentals for more than 20 years with no problems.

In an article in today's San Francisco Chronicle, neighbors voiced many objections to the proposal. One, Alfonso Faustian, who lives next door to the building, said: "She's running an illegal business, stealing from tenants in San Francisco that need housing. I don't need another hotel in the area, let alone the block." Solomon, who does not live in SF, told Chronicle reporters: "I didn't evict any tenants, the building was vacant when I bought it."

New laws regulating vacation rentals took effect on February 1, but because this complaint was filed before that, it was ruled on according to earlier codes. As of this morning, the VRBO listing for the property was still active.

· Nob Hill Rental Building Aims to Become a Mini-Hotel [Curbed SF]

· Bid To Convert Nob Hill Residential Property To Hotel Rejected [San Francisco Appeal]

· City implores Airbnb, other firms, to deactivate illegal listings [SFGate]

· SF to Vacation Rental Companies: "Help Us Catch Violators" [Curbed SF]

· Elegant & Best Nob Hill Property! [VRBO]