By Jacob Bourne
On February 16, Pacific Eagle along with its entitlement partner SKS Partners, submitted an application to the San Francisco Planning Commission for approval of a proposed mixed-use project at 555 Howard Street near the boundary of SoMa and Yerba Buena neighborhoods. The 36-story tower, designed by Renzo Piano Building Workshop in collaboration with Mark Cavagnero Associates, would provide 69 for-sale condo units, a 255-room luxury hotel and a ground floor restaurant along with ample amenities and 70 parking spaces.
The tower itself is divided into three slender segments by transparent connectors, marked by an abundance of glass with metallic framing. The hotel portion covers over 200,000 gross square feet with common spaces on the lower four floors and rooms on levels 5 through 19. The condominium’s 150,000 gross square feet occupy the upper levels 20 through 36.[contextly_sidebar id=”pzrqXWkk0JEP2EYnxKRs8P2GncsA9aF8″]“The design gives careful consideration to maximize natural light at its base, making the lower floors transparent and inviting to the public to allow for enhanced indoor-outdoor connectivity and permeability to the adjacent, proposed public park under the bus ramp,” commented Hans Galland, senior vice president, Pacific Eagle. “The ground floor is designed to be a lively urban space to leave to the city and let the street encroach.”
A major benefit of this strategically located project is that the restaurant, lounge areas, top-floor skybar and rooftop terrace will be open to the public as well as hotel patrons and residents. The rooftop area is surrounded by a 20 foot clear glass wall functioning as a protective barrier as well as mature trees. The feel of the space is designed to be “park-like” and offers panoramic city and Bay views. In addition to a spa and fitness center, other amenities are still under discussion by the development team including various cutting edge building technologies for both the hotel and residential.
“The fact that this project is near extensive public transit options is likely to significantly reduce automobile usage,” Galland stated. “Located a block from the Transbay Transit Center, the site has excellent proximity to public transit, boasts a Ride Score of 100, Bike Score of 88 and Walk Score of 94. The project also has 120 bike stalls for residents, guests and visitors.”
The project is geared towards earning LEED Platinum certification and developers aim for minimal impact on the environment through air quality enhancements and decisions regarding energy, materials and efficiency measures.
The housing component will have 15-percent of the units designated as affordable. Beyond the 400 building and construction trades jobs that the project is anticipated to generate, 300 permanent positions at the hotel will be created for the local workforce also positioned to benefit from the proximity to transit. The location is close to Interstate 80 and the Bay Bridge, and lies in the Downtown vicinity giving it strong access to numerous restaurants, bars, theaters, museums, and retail shopping at Union Square.