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Planning Resists a 12-Story Conservatory of Music Dorm

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Student housing is a major issue in San Francisco, as we noted yesterday when California College of Arts put forward plans for a new building near Showplace Square. Last fall, the San Francisco Conservatory of Music filed an application to build an 12-story, 150-foot tower at 200 Van Ness Avenue on the site of a building that it had purchased back in April. The site is zoned for just 96 feet in height, and Planning has now noted that an approval for a height in excess of 120 feet is "unlikely."

Planning's response to the Conservatory's proposal says that a 120-foot height limit could be considered, but anything higher "could only be contemplated if modest, contextually sensitive, and proposed alongside a truly exceptional public benefit program." They're looking for a package that includes "affordability, a rent-controlled unit replacement program, and other public benefits."

The Conservatory's original plans did offer up replacement housing for the 27 units of rent-controlled housing that would be demolished. They also called for 144 units with 320 student beds across a mix of three-bedrooms, two-bedrooms, and studios. There would also be room for a restaurant, rehearsal space, classrooms, and performance space. It sounds like the Conservatory's dreams have likely been dashed, but we'll keep an eye on what they propose next.

· California College of Arts Plans New Housing for 600 Students [Curbed SF]
· SF Conservatory of Music Plans 11-Story Tower for Van Ness [Curbed SF]
· 200-214 Van Ness Preliminary Planning Assessment [SF Planning; PDF]