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City and County of San Francisco

Parkmerced Project

Parkmerced header page=2529

What is Parkmerced?

Parkmerced is a 152-acre site (including streets, 116-acre excluding streets) under single ownership in the southwestern part of the City. The existing site, developed between 1941 and 1951, contains 3,221 housing units and is currently zoned RM-1 and RM-4 with various height limits ranging from 130 feet to 40 feet. The owner of Parkmerced has submitted applications to the City for the long-term comprehensive re-design, re-development and improvement of the site. The project, which would be implemented over the course of three decades, would be approved and implemented through a Development Agreement, between the City and the developer, that memorializes the obligations of both parties, as well as through new Planning Code regulations Code and accompanying Plan documents that lay out the details for community infrastructure improvements, environmental programs, and other elements necessary to support the neighborhood.

The Parkmerced project was approved by the Board of Supervisors on May 24, 2011

Documents for Download

Plan Documents
Vision Plan   24 MB
The Design Standards and Guidelines   54 MB
The Sustainability Plan   15 MB
The Transportation Plan   16 MB
The Infrastructure Report   15 MB

Planning Commission Documents, Packets & Presentations
Transmittal Memo from Planning Commission to Board of Supervisors    
Motion 18269 Parkmerced EIR Certification    
Motion 18270 Parkmerced CEQA Findings with Exhibits    
Resolution 18271 Parkmerced General Plan Planning Code Zoning Map Amendments    
Motion 18272 Parkmerced Coastal Zone    
Resolution 18273 Parkmerced Development Agreement    
 August 6, 2015: Phase 1 Info Presentation
 August 6, 2015: Phase 1 Overview
 August 6, 2015: Design Review Staff Report
 August 6, 2015: 300 Arballo Drive
 August 6, 2015: 99 Vidal Drive
 August 6, 2015: 455 Serrano Drive and 850 Gonzalez Drive
 August 6, 2015: 1188-1198 Junipero Serra Boulevard
 August 6, 2015: 21 and 25 Chumasero Drive
February 10, 2011: Addendum to Planning Commission Packet
February 10, 2011: Planning Commission Packet    
February 3, 2011: Addendum to Planning Commission Packet    
January 13, 2011: Initiation Resolution    
January 13, 2011: Initiation of Amendments to the Planning Code, Zoning Maps, and General Plan (continued from Dec 16, 2010)
January 13, 2011: Informational Presentation on Economic Analysis, Sustainability, and Miscellaneous Topics    
January 13, 2011: CBRE Draft Parkmerced Fiscal & Economic Impact Analysis
January 13, 2011: CBRE Draft Parkmerced Pro Forma Review & Public Benefits Analysis    
December 16, 2010: Informational Presentation on Transportation and Housing (including Rent Control and Tenant Relocation)   16 MB
November 18, 2010: Information Presentation on Urban Design and Open Space    
November 4, 2010: Informational Presentation on General Overview of Project and Draft Development Agreement    
October 21, 2010: Initiation of Amendments to Planning Code, Zoning Maps, and General Plan (including Executive Summary, Draft Resolution, Draft Ordinances, Plan documents)   111 MB
October 21, 2010: Initiation of Amendments to Planning Code, Zoning Maps, and General Plan (excluding Plan Documents)   1 MB

Board of Supervisors Documents
Development Agreement (AS RECORDED)   6 MB
Development Agreement (UPDATED June 3, 2011)   14 MB
Development Agreement (REDLINE: June 3, 2011 vs May 20, 2011)    
Development Agreement Amendments Introduced by Supervisor David Chiu (May 24, 2011)
Proposed Changes to Pages 54-59 of the Design Standards & Guidelines (May 20, 2011)    
Draft Development Agreement (UPDATED May 20, 2011)   12 MB
Draft Development Agreement (REDLINE: May 20, 2011 vs. May 13, 2011)    
Amendments to Planning Code Ordinance - Introduced at Land Use Committee May 16, 2011

Development Agreement
Development Agreement (AS RECORDED)   6 MB
Development Agreement (UPDATED June 3, 2011)   14 MB
Development Agreement (REDLINE: June 3, 2011 vs May 20, 2011)    
Development Agreement Amendments Introduced by Supervisor David Chiu (May 24, 2011)
Draft Development Agreement (UPDATED May 20, 2011)   12 MB
Draft Development Agreement (REDLINE: May 20, 2011 vs. May 13, 2011)   0.4 MB
Draft Development Agreement (UPDATED May 13, 2011)   13 MB
Draft Development Agreement (REDLINE: May 13, 2011 vs. March 4, 2011)   0.5 MB
Draft Development Agreement (UPDATED March 4, 2011)   7.8 MB
Draft Development Agreement (REDLINE: REDLINE: March 4, 2011 vs. Jan. 26, 2011)   0.5 MB
Draft Development Agreement (UPDATED Jan. 26, 2011)   0.3 MB
Draft Development Agreement (REDLINE: Jan. 26, 2011 vs. Jan. 20, 2011)   0.7 MB
Draft Development Agreement (UPDATED Jan. 20, 2011)   0.5 MB
Draft Development Agreement (REDLINE: Jan. 20, 2011 vs. Dec.16, 2010)   0.6 MB
Draft Development Agreement (UPDATED Dec.16, 2010)   0.7 MB
Draft Development Agreement (REDLINE: Dec.16, 2010 vs. Nov.3, 2010)   0.8 MB
Draft Development Agreement (UPDATED Nov. 3, 2010)   1.5 MB
Draft Development Agreement (REDLINE: Nov. 3, 2010 vs. Oct. 21, 2010)   1.0 MB
Draft Development Agreement (dated Oct. 21, 2010)   1.5 MB
Memo to Planning Commission regarding Development Agreement (dated Oct. 21, 2010)    

Environmental Review
Draft Environmental Impact Report    
EIR Errata (dated Feb. 3, 2011)    
Comments and Responses (dated Oct. 28, 2010)    

Other Documents
SFMTA - M Ocean View Realignment Notification    
Parkmerced EOEP and First Source Signed SIGNED    


Purpose of the Project

The Vision Plan provides a good overview of the purposes and major components of the project. Following is a general overview:

The proposed Project is a long-term (approximately 20-30 years) mixed-use development program to comprehensively re-plan and re-design the approximately 116-acre site (152-acres including streets). The Project proposes to increase the residential density, provide new commercial and retail services, provide new transit facilities, and improve existing utilities within the development site. Of the existing 3,221 residential units that exist on the site, approximately 1,683 units located within the 11 existing towers would remain and approximately 1,538 existing apartments would be demolished and replaced in a phased work program. As required by the proposed Development Agreement, these replacement units would be subject to the San Francisco Rent Stabilization and Arbitration Ordinance and existing tenants in the to-be-replaced buildings would have rights to relocate into the new units at their existing rents. An additional 5,679 net new units would also be added to the Site for a project total of 8,900 units. New buildings on the site would range in height from 35 feet to 145 feet, and would not be taller than the existing towers, which will remain.

Neighborhood-serving retail and office space would also be constructed as part of the proposed Project and concentrated on Crespi Drive, near the northeast part of the site and the light-rail line. The proposed new neighborhood core would be located within walking distance of all the residences within Parkmerced. Small neighborhood-serving retail establishments would be constructed outside of the neighborhood core, in close proximity to residential units throughout the site. A new elementary school (to replace an existing one on-site) and daycare facility, fitness center, and new open space uses including athletic fields, walking and biking paths, a new organic farm, and community gardens would also be provided on the Project Site. Infrastructure improvements would include the installation of renewable energy sources, such as wind turbines and photovoltaic cells. The Sustainability Plan details goals and implementation actions for the Project.

The proposed Project would provide 68 acres of open space in a network of publically accessible neighborhood parks, athletic fields, public plazas, greenways and an organic farm. These are detailed in the Design Standards & Guidelines. In addition to these 68 acres of open space, the Project would provide significant additional open space in the form of private or semi-private open space areas such as outdoor courtyards, roof decks, and balconies. These private and semi-private open spaces would be required with the development of each residential building within Parkmerced. The parks and open space would be more accessible and usable than the current open spaces. Parks and open space within, and in the vicinity of, the proposed Project would continue to receive a substantial amount of sunlight during the day when use is at its highest rate. Existing coastal views from parks located to the east and north of the Project Site would be maintained with implementation of the proposed Project.

The transportation system modifications proposed as part of the Parkmerced Development Project, as described in the Transportation Plan, would include rerouting the existing MUNI Metro M Ocean View line from 19th Avenue through the development, new and re-designed public streets, and modifications to intersections and streets around the perimeter of the site. These improvements would require approval of the San Francisco Municipal Transit Authority, the California Public Utilities Commission, and Caltrans. The Transportation Plan also includes a comprehensive Transportation Demand Management (TDM) program that obligates the Developer to undertake certain programs and services, including free shuttles to Daly City BART, transit pass subsidies for all residents, a Transportation Coordinator, amongst other items. Off-street parking for the residential units will primarily, but not exclusively be in underground garages, and will be concentrated on the west side of the site (while units are concentrated toward the eastern half) to discourage casual usage. Per the proposed SUD, parking will be capped at one space per dwelling unit and generally at one space per 750 square feet of non-residential uses (with some variation for specific uses).

Park Merced rendering


Approval Process & Key Documents

Because Parkmerced is a long-term project over several phases and involving both the construction of new buildings and community improvements (including re-aligned streets and blocks and multi-phase public transportation improvements), the existing zoning rules are inadequate in addressing a project of this scope and in regulating and laying out the requirements for the development. Additionally, there are key issues in the project, such as rent-protections and relocation-rights of exiting tenants, that cannot logistically or legally be regulated simply through the Planning Code or Planning Commission conditions of approval. Therefore The Parkmerced development program would be implemented through three sets of documents:

Development Agreement: This document, a legally-binding contract between the City and Developer, lays out all of the obligations of the Developer and the City. Development Agreements are typical and necessary for master-planned developments of this scope. This document establishes the overall framework for the project and all of the public benefits negotiated by the City, in exchange for a guarantee of the right of the Developer to build the basic project in accordance with the Plan documents (see below) while the Agreement is in effect (generally 30 years). The Agreement includes protections for existing tenants and a Phasing Plan that lists all required community improvements and the triggers for requiring their construction or implementation. The Development Agreement will need to be approved by the Planning Commission and the Board of Supervisors, and signed by the directors of other key agencies, including the SFMTA and SFPUC.

Planning Code: The Planning Code, through the creation of a Special Use District, would establish the core land use regulations for Parkmerced related to acceptable land uses, building height limits, bulk limits, setback requirements, open space for dwelling units, and parking. It also would establish the process for review and approval of specific building projects and land uses throughout the project's implementation. The Plan Documents, particularly the Design Standards and Guidelines, supplement the regulations included in the Special Use District.

The Plan Documents: There are four guiding documents that combine to create a comprehensive and detailed blueprint for guiding all future land use, building, and community infrastructure improvements and programs at Parkmerced. These documents are incorporated by reference into both the Development Agreement and the Planning Code.

Park Merced Vision Plan

The Vision Plan

The Vision Plan lays out a conceptual framework for transforming the existing Parkmerced housing development into a "21st century model of a healthy neighborhood".

Download The Vision Plan 24 MB

The Design Standards and Guidelines

The Design Standards & Guidelines

The Design Standards and Guidelines prescribe urban design controls for land use, open spaces, streets, blocks and individual buildings. It also outlines a process for project implementation.

Download The Design Standards and Guidelines 42 MB (updated 09/16/14)

The Sustainability Plan

The Sustainability Plan

The Sustainability Plan contains specific strategies and metrics which together address the management and conservation of energy, water and other natural resources, and also establishes goals for green building standards.

Download The Sustainability Plan 15 MB

The Transportation Plan

The Transportation Plan

The Transportation Plan provides a framework and management plan for addressing transit and vehicular travel to and from the neighborhood.

Download The Transportation Plan 16 MB

The Infrastructure Report

The Infrastructure Report

The Infrastructure Report establishes an outline for anticipated site-wide improvements to all street and public rights-of-way, underground utilities, and grading.

Download The Infrastructure Report 15 MB


Implementation Documents and Applications

Phase 1 Application – Development Summary

This application pertains to Phase 1 of the Parkmerced Project (the “Project”). This application is submitted in accordance with the Project’s Development Agreement, which requires the project sponsor to submit a Phase Application for approval by the Planning Director prior to the submittal of building permits for such phase of the Project. Initially capitalized terms used herein and not otherwise defined shall have the meaning ascribed to such terms in the Development Agreement.

Phase 1 is comprised of four development subphases: Subphase A through Subphase D. The parcels subject to Phase 1 are shown by subphase on the attached Existing Phase 1 Site Plan diagram and further described by block number and area on page 4 of this application. Phase 1 consists primarily of residential development on the western and southeastern portions of the Project site. In addition, as described in more detail below, Phase 1 will include a number of Community Improvements and CEQA Mitigation Measures, as required by the approved Parkmerced Phasing Plan. For more information, please see the complete Park Merced Phase 1 Application.

Residential Development. Phase 1 includes construction of approximately 1,668 residential
dwelling units distributed among the four subphases as follows

  • Subphase A – Approximately 390 new units with no demolition. Of the 390 new units 56 units will be Replacement Units to replace units demolished in subphase C and D.
  • Subphase B – Approximately 567 new units with the demolition of the existing parking garages, Garage No. 2 and Garage No. 1.
  • Subphase C – Approximately, 333 new units with the demolition of a maintenance building and 10 units on existing block 37W and 28 units on existing block 34. Of the new 333 new units 66 will be Replacement Units to replace units demolished in Phase 2.
  • Subphase D – Approximately, 378 new units with the demolition of 18 existing units on existing block 19. Of the 378 new units, 100 will be Replacement Units to replace units demolished in future Phase 2.

The DA permits the inclusionary housing requirements for the Project to be satisfied by construction on-site, off-site, or payment of an in-lieu fee. Although the DA requires that the project applicant state its intended method of meeting the inclusionary housing requirements for each development phase in the Development Phase Application, in light of the significant obligation to provide rent controlled replacement units for all existing units on the project site, the DA provides greater flexibility to the project sponsor in the timing of this choice as compared to the current San Francisco Planning Code; specifically, the DA permits this decision to be made at the time of the issuance of building permits for each residential building. If the on-site BMR Requirement of fifteen percent (15%) were to be applied to the proposed 1,446 net new units, it would result in a requirement of approximately 220 BMR units. The project sponsor currently anticipates constructing 1/3 of the BMR units on-site and paying in-lieu fees to satisfy the remaining inclusionary housing requirement for net new units in Phase 1.

Non-Residential Summary. Phase 1 includes the following:

  • Subphase A – Construction of a two-level, below-grade, approximately 159,680 sf (accommodating approximately 453 parked cars) parking garage on Block 06.
  • Subphase B – Demolition of Garage No. 1 and Garage No. 2, which total approximately 222,000 sf (accommodating approximately 740 parked cars) and the construction of two, two-level below grade parking garages on Blocks 22 and 20 of approximately 133,099 sf (accommodating approximately 248 parked cars) and 133,691 sf (accommodating approximately 225 parked cars), respectively.
  • Subphase C – Demolition of a 28,343 sf maintenance building and 37 existing parking spaces located on a surface lot. Construction of a two-level below grade parking garage on Block 03W that is approximately 219,512 sf (accommodating approximately 618 parked cars).
  • Subphase D – Construction of approximately 3,500 sf ground floor active uses/retail that will be visible from and oriented towards the new neighborhood commons and a one level below grade parking garage of approximately 23,550 sf (accommodating approximately 66 parked cars) on Block 21S.


Environmental Review   Rick Cooper
(415) 575-9027


General Questions   Joshua Switzky
(415) 575-6815
  Elizabeth Watty
(415) 558-6620
Last updated: 8/12/2015 3:35:33 PM