Equitable development is within reach in SF’s Tenderloin [SF Chronicle Opinion]

 
Photo Cred: Lea Suzuki, The Chronicle Zahra Sayed (left) stands with her father during the opening ceremony for the 1400 Mission housing project in 2015.

Photo Cred: Lea Suzuki, The Chronicle

Zahra Sayed (left) stands with her father during the opening ceremony for the 1400 Mission housing project in 2015.

 

In one of two opinion pieces solicited by the SF Chronicle about the Tenderloin, Don Falk, CEO of Tenderloin Neighborhood Development Corporation (TNDC), expresses concern over unprecedented market-rate development in the Tenderloin amid lower federal funding for low-income housing, pointing out the juxtaposition of a historically low income neighborhood pressurized by the recent swell.

But Falk also posits a solution through initiatives that approach development through a yes/if lens, and points to the Tenderloin Development with Displacement Plan, which welcomes development given there are benefits to mitigate affects of displacement while making current, low income Tenderloin residents the priority. From the article:

"Following this “yes/if” approach, the plan recognizes that we can’t halt the overwhelming forces of development, but we can blunt its worst effects and create a place where people with low incomes remain welcome, fostering a Tenderloin that is high-opportunity and diverse. Recent projects, such as 1066 Market St., for example, have met their affordable housing requirements by providing units with rent far lower than the law requires, within reach of Tenderloin residents. The project at 950 Market St. committed to having its ground-floor commercial space cater to existing residents rather than tourists.

This vision of greater mix of incomes while preserving the neighborhood’s character is possible only because of earlier generations’ foresight to preserve one-third of the Tenderloin’s housing for low-income occupancy. This baseline of affordable housing distinguishes the Tenderloin from neighborhoods such as the Mission and South of Market."

Read the full opinion article from Don Falk here. What's your take? Let us know.