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Cat-covered garage on Valencia could become 40 new homes

Developers have long had plans to convert disused parking garage

Google Street View

This week San Francisco Planning Department will hear plans to demolish a long disused garage at 235 Valencia in favor of 40 new homes designed by San Francisco-based Heller Manus Architects.

The only significant neighborhood casualty would be several dozen cats—not actual felines, but instead the frenetic, multi-colored cartoon cats covering the presently vacant building’s facade, created by a local DJ and apparent cat fancier in 2017.

Hoodline notes that late neighborhood mainstay Hap Jones formerly owned the building 235 Valencia and operated his motorcycle dealership out of the location. More recently the place was a Volvo dealership, and after that a pop-up gallery space called Parlor SF.

The Parlor SF project is what gifted the building with its present feline appeal. SFist reported in 2017 that the fractured scene of crazy cats is the work of DJ Primo, the self-described “hardest working DJ in San Francisco.”

Heller Manus has designs that could preserve the original facade of the garage, but it seems that the cats will have to go no matter what version they go with.

Heller Manus

According to the proposal going before Planning:

The project includes the demolition of an approximately 9,210 sq. ft. retail automotive repair use and construction of a new 55- ft. tall, five -story mixed -use building [...] fronting Valencia Street and Clinton Park, and 28,545 gross sq. ft. of residential use for 40 dwelling units at the upper floors.

The scope of the present plans means that developer DDG needs to be granted a variance, which the Planning Department will consider Wednesday morning.