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View Poll Results: Which transbay tower design scheme do you like best?
#1 Richard Rogers 39 7.89%
#2 Cesar Pelli 98 19.84%
#3 SOM 357 72.27%
Voters: 494. You may not vote on this poll

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  #1041  
Old Posted Sep 4, 2007, 8:33 AM
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Originally Posted by tyler82 View Post
Of course, if there is a large destructive earthquake any time soon, we can kiss away any hopes of a real high rise neighborhood for at least the next 50 years.
Hey Tyler, don't go tempting fate! (knock on wood)
It's my hope that we see SOM's transbay proposal as well as many other highrises and supertalls contsructed in the city during the next couple of years, before another big one hits (a-la Loma Prieta) and scares developers away from contributing more massive monuments to SF's beautiful skyline.

By the way... Does anyone have any idea of when we (the public) can expect to see some kind of rendering of Piano's tower project? I can't wait!
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  #1042  
Old Posted Sep 4, 2007, 5:32 PM
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Originally Posted by Nowhereman1280 View Post
Ok, this is kind of off topic, but I just recieved wonderful news. I just found out that I have a paid internship in San Francisco with a developer secured for next summer. I have been following the rise of San Francisco's new skyline as it breaks free of the prior NIMBY stranglehold and am incredibly excited that I will probably be spending my summer there.

That last comment brings me to an on-topic question, what exactly was it that triggered this change of heart in the SF planning dept? It seems SF was devoid of tall projects for so many years and now they are just coming out of the woodwork...
Dean Macris--who has always been "one of us" I think but whose height urges were suppressed when he was a career public servant--was brought back out of retirement to become the Planning Director when the former rather weak and politically subservient director quit. A lot of the new attitude stems from that. Also, a few politicians, especially Chris Daly (to give him some credit), have suddenly realized what they could get out of making deals with developers rather than opposing them at ever turn.
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  #1043  
Old Posted Sep 4, 2007, 5:40 PM
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^^The Chronicle seems to be on a campaign to stir up the NIMBYs and growth opponents so they'll have something to report about. They are getting more and more desperate as their paying readerhip collapses.
I've done a Google search for a few of the NIMBYs who have written letters to the editor in protest of the new towers. They all seem to be older San Franciscans (in their late 50s - 70s). I think that says a lot about the changing demographics of our city and how the Chronicle really likes to relish in its past laurels. It makes sense though, as their readers tend to be comprised of these older baby-boomers and above. Most younger people, like myself get more of our news off the internet, as we don't have time to sit down and read a paper every day. I guess it makes sense for the Chronicle to try to appease their older constituents, as they realize that the days of paper newspapers, sans the New York Times are numbered.
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  #1044  
Old Posted Sep 4, 2007, 5:54 PM
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^^^I'm 62. I don't think age makes you either a NIMBY or a Chronicle reader. I used to be a Chronicle reader but began to pass when the paper became less interesting as it shrank and downsized to save money. I still read the Wall Street Journal every day and I look through SFGate (the Chronicle online) and AZStarnet (the Arizona Star online) every day. I must say I think back when more people read a good paper every day, the average person was better informed.

My guess is the Chron's NIMBY letter writers are older because older people have more time to write letters and have positive memories of a San Francisco they think will be wrecked by new development. Those who've spent any time in New York or Chicago probably wouldn't think that, but a lot of locals are really very provincial.
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  #1045  
Old Posted Sep 4, 2007, 6:10 PM
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Originally Posted by BTinSF View Post
^^^I'm 62. I don't think age makes you either a NIMBY or a Chronicle reader. I used to be a Chronicle reader but began to pass when the paper became less interesting as it shrank and downsized to save money. I still read the Wall Street Journal every day and I look through SFGate (the Chronicle online) and AZStarnet (the Arizona Star online) every day. I must say I think back when more people read a good paper every day, the average person was better informed.

My guess is the Chron's NIMBY letter writers are older because older people have more time to write letters and have positive memories of a San Francisco they think will be wrecked by new development. Those who've spent any time in New York or Chicago probably wouldn't think that, but a lot of locals are really very provincial.
I wasn't implying that most people of an older generation are NIMBY's. I have seen a lot of empty-nesters purchasing new condos in my area. My fiancee's aunt and uncle are considering it as well, so I know that there are many elders that are proponents of new high-rise developments.

I still think there are a number of people that do purchase newspapers. I subscribed to the WSJ while I was in business school. However, I think that people of my generation inherently tend to be more connected through the internet and are more accustomed to reading their news online. I read articles on SFGate, CNN.com, WSJ.com, etc daily, whereas my father still receives three daily newspapers.

My argument wasn't that most elders were NIMBYs, but that most NIMBYs are elders. I think many of them are from the flower child era of SF, where the dynamics were much different. What was mainstream during their youthful eras is now marginalized. I agree with you that these people look back to a different San Francisco and don't want to see change. However, I strongly believe that change can be a good thing and most of this development provides us with more options for the city, in terms of living, working and recreation.
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  #1046  
Old Posted Sep 4, 2007, 7:15 PM
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^^^I'm 62. ...older (retired) people have more time to write letters...
Now that you are retired, isn't this you on SSP Forums?
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  #1047  
Old Posted Sep 4, 2007, 8:44 PM
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SSP.. PLEASE update your servers! All day long I was unable to connect, and lost some posts because "server connection lost." This happens all of the time, probably 50% or more of the times I try to connect, and even late at night, but mostly during the day. Very frustrating.. please !
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  #1048  
Old Posted Sep 4, 2007, 10:49 PM
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Now that you are retired, isn't this you on SSP Forums?
Absolutely--and I wonder how all you folks with no time to read the papers have so much time to post. But I'll leave it alone . . . .

I will mention, though, that back when I was working and reverse commuting to the burbs every day, one big reason I enjoyed taking BART was the opportunity to read my newspapers on the train: Chron on the way out, WSJ on the way back.
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  #1049  
Old Posted Sep 5, 2007, 2:37 AM
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Sorry to get political, but skimming through some old news about Virgin America and SFO, I came across this:

"Virgin America initially considered six cities for its headquarters – San Francisco, Boston, New York, Los Angeles, Philadelphia and Washington, D.C. A team effort by elected officials, business leaders and tourism executives from both San Francisco and San Mateo counties and Gov. Schwarzenegger’s office eventually convinced Virgin America to locate its headquarters in Burlingame, CA., just south of San Francisco, and to base its operations at SFO... Virgin America is the only airline based in California and the first to have its headquarters in Northern California."

I think it says a lot about Newsom and his administration, from a purely development standpoint, about the potential that our city has under this man's leadership. He seems to be very good at brining in interesting ideas and businesses to the city. He's got my vote !
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  #1050  
Old Posted Sep 5, 2007, 7:35 AM
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Originally Posted by tyler82 View Post
I think it says a lot about Newsom and his administration, from a purely development standpoint, about the potential that our city has under this man's leadership. He seems to be very good at brining in interesting ideas and businesses to the city. He's got my vote !
United Airlines also recently considered moving its corporate headquarters to San Francisco. That was a longer shot for Newsom, I think, because of United's history with Chicago and its financial condition. But it's interesting they were considering it.

Hopefully with these new towers going up, San Francisco will become less expensive for office space.
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  #1051  
Old Posted Sep 5, 2007, 6:17 PM
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^^^2 decades ago, United had a major maintenance hub in San Francisco. At that time, their "history" here was as strong as with Chicago but they decided to consolidate and chose Chicago as the place to do it.

As Wikipedia says: "United's early route system, formed by connecting air mail routes, operated north-and-south along the West Coast, and east-to-west along a transcontinental route from San Francisco to the Midwest and Mid-Atlantic states via Denver, Colorado. The early interconnections made at San Francisco and Denver during this era became the basis of major United hubs in these cities, and still exist today."

They didn't start out in Chicago and I'm not sure when they moved their HQ there. But the roots aren't as deep as some think.
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  #1052  
Old Posted Sep 6, 2007, 1:38 AM
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I'm not sure if anyone has posted this already, but Forest City Enterprises has a website devoted to its proposal. It may not be the best design by me, but I still enjoy reading about it.

http://www.transbayforestcity.com/
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  #1053  
Old Posted Sep 6, 2007, 1:39 AM
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I'm not sure if anyone has posted this already, but Forest City Enterprises has a website devoted to its proposal. It may not be the best design by me, but I still enjoy reading about it.

http://www.transbayforestcity.com/
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  #1054  
Old Posted Sep 6, 2007, 6:28 AM
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Originally Posted by Reminiscence View Post
I'm not sure if anyone has posted this already, but Forest City Enterprises has a website devoted to its proposal. It may not be the best design by me, but I still enjoy reading about it.

http://www.transbayforestcity.com/

McDonald's McDonald's McDonald's. Of course John King loves this one-- he has no taste!
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  #1055  
Old Posted Sep 6, 2007, 7:53 AM
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Taste is rather subjective. John King's taste is just DIFFERENT from yours and most other people. Just because something is popular, does not always mean that it's good. It is rare that something has both critical and popular acclaim, but when it does, it is something truly monumental. The Golden Gate Bridge is a good example. Monumental design is only a fraction of what is being judged. With all issues being considered, Pelli and Rogers still have a chance at winning. However, if public pressure to select SOM's design over the others helps to get it selected, then I say, "CHOOSE SOM!" As long as any potention negative issues can be reasonably resolved, then SOM might be the better choice. If the judges choose a design that more of the public does not like, the overall success of the project could suffer.
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  #1056  
Old Posted Sep 10, 2007, 10:54 PM
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Jury names favorite for Transbay terminal, tower
San Francisco Chronicle

There's now a front-runner in the race for the rights to build what could be the West Coast's tallest building: a proposal that includes an obelisk-like, 1,200 foot office tower next to a terminal topped by a park the length of five football fields.

That proposal - from Pelli Clarke Pelli Architects and the development firm Hines - is the favorite of a jury of development experts assembled by the Transbay Joint Powers Authority. The jury's recommendation was sent today to the Transbay authority's board of directors.

Full article: LINK

My comment to SF Gate:
"My vote goes for SOM, but I would be happy with the Pelli proposal as well. I have a feeling it's not quite as boring in real life than it shows in the renderings, it has the possibility to be very monumental, beautiful, and crystal like. The park could be a cool idea, after all, they are building a huge roof top park in the new Cal Academy of Sciences in GG Park that nobody seems to be complaining about it 'never being used'. And SOM could still build their tower, perhaps a little shorter, in the proposed development sites surrounding the terminal where height limits are being raised. I just think GOD that Rogers design wasn't chosen, not so much for the tower, but because of his hideous transit station! I wish we could have all three towers going up at the same time!"

Yah, I would prefer SOM, but you know, tis proposal is pretty freaking amazing too, and I'd be happy as a school girl seeing this thing rise in the next few years. Can't wait !

OK, and then I got to thinking, and had an epiphany, so I sent them a second comment:

"I think we are all forgetting one thing that will dismiss Pelli's proposal from winning: it is 100% office!! If Chris Daly sits on the TJPA board, there is no way he is going to let this happen without making them throw in some affordable housing, which they probably won't be able to do to make it pencil out to match the cost of the project with the funds it will produce. Yah, that's why they proposed giving the city more money, because they would MAKE more money off of it with all office space (office space is worth more than residential space), versus the other towers which have affordable housing and residential in them. Also, it violates an SF proposition that doesn't allow more than a certain amount of office space to come into the SF market at once, so don't worry SOM lovers, Pelli won't win, not with the way they have it set up now."

I never thought I'd be saying this, but Chris Daly could actually save the day!

Last edited by tyler82; Sep 10, 2007 at 11:13 PM.
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  #1057  
Old Posted Sep 10, 2007, 11:34 PM
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Originally Posted by tyler82 View Post
Jury names favorite for Transbay terminal, tower
San Francisco Chronicle

There's now a front-runner in the race for the rights to build what could be the West Coast's tallest building: a proposal that includes an obelisk-like, 1,200 foot office tower next to a terminal topped by a park the length of five football fields.

That proposal - from Pelli Clarke Pelli Architects and the development firm Hines - is the favorite of a jury of development experts assembled by the Transbay Joint Powers Authority. The jury's recommendation was sent today to the Transbay authority's board of directors.

Full article: LINK

My comment to SF Gate:
"My vote goes for SOM, but I would be happy with the Pelli proposal as well. I have a feeling it's not quite as boring in real life than it shows in the renderings, it has the possibility to be very monumental, beautiful, and crystal like. The park could be a cool idea, after all, they are building a huge roof top park in the new Cal Academy of Sciences in GG Park that nobody seems to be complaining about it 'never being used'. And SOM could still build their tower, perhaps a little shorter, in the proposed development sites surrounding the terminal where height limits are being raised. I just think GOD that Rogers design wasn't chosen, not so much for the tower, but because of his hideous transit station! I wish we could have all three towers going up at the same time!"

Yah, I would prefer SOM, but you know, tis proposal is pretty freaking amazing too, and I'd be happy as a school girl seeing this thing rise in the next few years. Can't wait !

OK, and then I got to thinking, and had an epiphany, so I sent them a second comment:

"I think we are all forgetting one thing that will dismiss Pelli's proposal from winning: it is 100% office!! If Chris Daly sits on the TJPA board, there is no way he is going to let this happen without making them throw in some affordable housing, which they probably won't be able to do to make it pencil out to match the cost of the project with the funds it will produce. Yah, that's why they proposed giving the city more money, because they would MAKE more money off of it with all office space (office space is worth more than residential space), versus the other towers which have affordable housing and residential in them. Also, it violates an SF proposition that doesn't allow more than a certain amount of office space to come into the SF market at once, so don't worry SOM lovers, Pelli won't win, not with the way they have it set up now."

I never thought I'd be saying this, but Chris Daly could actually save the day!

Pelli's team has already stated that they could easily modify their plan to be mixed use... my guess is that SOM's plan was simply not economical because of its agressive design.
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  #1058  
Old Posted Sep 10, 2007, 11:35 PM
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ooops, double post
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  #1059  
Old Posted Sep 10, 2007, 11:44 PM
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That news really disappointed me today. They basically ordered them by amount the developer would pay. And the Pelli team offered the most. It's that simple.

It's not that I dislike the Pelli tower and terminal, but I was only truly excited by the SOM proposal. (And I have to admit, the additional 175 feet was no small part of that excitement.) I'll be happy with Pelli, but I would have been passionate about the SOM design.
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  #1060  
Old Posted Sep 10, 2007, 11:49 PM
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The difference...

"Another selling point: the developer offers to pay $350 million for the land where it would erect a 1.8 million square skyscraper - more than $200 million above the sales price offered by the other two design-development teams."

http://www.sfgate.com/flat/archive/2...BAN4S2QK3.html
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