FOGG Alert – July 12, 2014

July 11th, 2014

MORE PROBLEMS FOR CONTROVERSIAL 8 WASHINGTON LUXURY CONDO PROJECT

We want to update you on some recent findings about the 8 Washington Street high rise luxury condominium project which in some form, is still in the planning and development process.

Thanks to FOGG’s attorney Sue Hestor, who has spent many grueling hours researching past documents covering the progression of the 8 Washington project.

Sue has uncovered serious mistakes that need to be addressed by the SF Planning Department and Board of Supervisors.

The first involves a mistake in the City height limit maps for the three blocks adjacent to the 8 Washington site that makes up the Golden Gateway Commons.  During the 8 Washington approval process the SF Planning Department staff erroneously listed the height limit of these three blocks at 275 feet, using those heights to justify the 8 Washington project at 136 feet.  In fact, the actual height limit for those blocks set by the City when the Golden Gateway Commons was originally approved by the SF Planning Department and the Redevelopment Agency was 84 feet.

The second issue involves old, recently unearthed Planning documents indicating that part of the larger Golden Gateway complex that would have accommodated the 8 Washington project contained a 1977 Plan Unit Development (PUD) that the SF Planning staff missed this time around.  The 1977 PUD covered the 3 lots designated as “recreational” now occupied by the community’s outdoor recreational center – The Bay Club at the Gateway.  It required development and maintenance of the Golden Gateway swimming pools and tennis courts in lieu of otherwise required rear yards.  That requirement, that these blocks be used solely for recreational purposes has been in place the past 40 years.

Both of these items must be addressed by the SF Planning Department and Board of Supervisors, along with what actions might be needed to be taken to correct these mistakes and prevent similar mistakes from occurring on this and other sites in the future.

While these new problems further cloud the City’s approvals for luxury condos at the ill-conceived 8 Washington site they should be viewed in the larger context of overwhelming voter rejection of the 8 Washington project in November, 2013 (by a 2 to1 margin), and the recent court decision throwing out an earlier State Lands Commission approval of a public trust land swap necessary for the 8 Washington project to proceed.

Several other lawsuits challenging the original approvals of the 8 Washington project are still in litigation.

These findings require FOGG to ask some pertinent questions…

Would the 8 Supervisors who voted for Mr. Snellgrove’s 8 Washington project have a change of heart if they had the facts as stated in our ALERT?

Would the Mayor & Lt. Governor (former Mayor) have been seen on TV and in print with their misstatements and falsehoods if they had known the facts?

Would the California State Teachers Retirement System (CalSTRS) have thrown away (invested) millions of teacher’s retirement dollars to support the 8 Washington project?

Would the SF Port have entered into an Exclusive Negotiation Agreement (ENA) with Mr. Snellgrove if they had the facts at hand?

Does the SF Planning Department staff have the skill that is needed to keep their records up to date and provide honest and correct information on planning matters?

FOGG only asks that our elected officials and their appointees adhere to the rules and facts. We ask that they listen to those they represent – not just those with money and political connections – and engage in honest dialog about this 8 Washington project. We’ve seen enough PAY for PLAY.

FOGG Open Letter – July 5, 2014

July 5th, 2014

BAY CLUB STATES ITS POSITION 

In the past few weeks there has been a good deal of speculation and rumor concerning the Bay Club’s change in ownership structure.

Bay Club President & CEO, Matthew Stevens has provided FOGG with the following statement to help clarify where the Bay Club is headed.

Since opening Bay Club San Francisco in 1977, The Bay Club Company has been committed to providing its members the best in active lifestyle amenities and experiences throughout the Bay Area and beyond.  In June 2014, Bay Club announced a new ownership structure including York Capital, the management team (120 employees), and JMA Ventures (minority investor).  With this ownership restructuring, members will see a marked increase in Bay Club’s commitment to recreation amenities.  Specifically, Bay Club has an immediate focus on expanding the tennis, swimming, and squash inventory in the marketplace (including SF proper), while continuing to be a recreation leader in northern California.  As new opportunities are finalized, members of Bay Club will be among the first notified of the New! benefits, services, and/or amenities available (based on varying membership structures).  For those who wish to speak with someone at Bay Club with comments, questions, or concerns – please feel free to contact their President & CEO, Matthew Stevens, at matthew.stevens@bayclubs.com.

FOGG appreciates the cooperation of Matthew Stevens in providing this information on the restructure of the Bay Club, and has kindly provided his email address if you have further questions. FOGG asks that you include us on your response to Matthew at coaches@fogg.us when writing him, so we can be kept up to date with your concerns.

There is still a great deal that needs to be done in preserving our outdoor recreational center, the Bay Club at the Gateway. We have much more work to do and look forward to your positive participation, as we begin the 11th year of FOGG’s efforts.

FOGG Alert – June 4, 2014

June 4th, 2014

PROPOSITION B is a Winner!!

FOGG congratulates the NO WALL team on another NO WALL on the WATERFRONT victory with the success of PROPOSITION B.

San Francisco voters approved Proposition B in the Tuesday, June 3, 2014 Primary Election.

For our supporters who are not San Francisco voters, Proposition B will let the voters decide whether to allow any development on Port property to exceed the existing height limits.

Many FOGG supporters as individuals worked as volunteers, and should be commended for the time and effort they put in to making a success of the Proposition B campaign.

While the voters have spoken on the present waterfront height limits, FOGG must continue its battle to preserve our outdoor recreational center (Bay Club the Gateway). Mr. Snellgrove is no doubt planning a new project that can fit under the present 84 feet height limit that exists on our recreational center; his so-called 8 Washington site.

FOGG is researching its options with the able assistance of our attorney, and volunteer workers. FOGG is also sure we will have the continued leadership of David Chiu, our District 3 Supervisor, and support of Supervisors John Avalos and David Campos. We look forward to finally putting to rest any proposed development that would destroy our community’s recreational center.

It must be remembered that when the Gateway (formerly The Golden Gateway) was first developed, it was done so with the support of Federal HUD dollars. It was stated that the land where the present recreational center is located in a series of resolutions was:

a) MAPPED on the Redevelopment Plan as recreational use, and

b) The site was transferred at no cost to the original developer, the Perini Corporation, because the land had no dollar value. This was also at the time when the balance of the area (GG Commons) was SOLD to Perini. So, inability to develop the present recreational site WAS and STILL IS an issue.

As always we look forward to having your continued support as we push ahead to preserve our open recreational space.

FOGG Open Letter – May 30, 2014

May 29th, 2014

Summer Kids Camps 2014 – Update #4 – Camps Begin on Monday, June 2nd

FOGG wants to update you with our progress on the Scholarship Program for this summer.

Our Scholarship program is now into its 4th successful year.

Thanks to the donations from many of our supporters and the cooperation of Bay Club management, FOGG is proud to announce that we will be supporting more than 30 kids for this summer’s Kids Camps at Bay Club at The Gateway.  The Camps run all summer through Labor Day.

We want to add still more kids to this Program.

FOGG again wishes to thank those who have donated to help those youngsters who would not otherwise have the opportunity to experience a fun summer under the supervision of dedicated and professional Bay Club staff. There are lots of activities in the Kids Camp Program. These include swim and tennis lessons, arts and crafts, a variety of games, rest time and lunch. All of this is in a warm, safe, family friendly environment.

For those who have thought of making a contribution to this program but have not yet done so, please offer your support for this wonderful summer event. Help the youngsters who will benefit. Let them know that we care for them!

Donations may be made online at this website.  Please can click on the ‘Donate to 2014 Kids Summer Camp’ yellow button on the right side of the website.

You may also mail your donations to Friends of Golden Gateway, P. O. Box 2294, San Francisco, CA, 94126. Please make checks payable to PDF/FOGG and write “Scholarship Fund” on the memo line.

FOGG thanks you all again for your continuing support.

FOGG Open Letter – May 2, 2014

May 2nd, 2014

 

Summer Kids Camps 2014 – Scholarship Program Donations – Update #3 Read the rest of this entry »

FOGG Alert – April 19, 2014

April 19th, 2014

Update on Robert Vergara Read the rest of this entry »

FOGG Open Letter – April 15, 2014

April 15th, 2014

CORRECTION – Summer Kids Camps 2014 – Donations – Update #2 Read the rest of this entry »

FOGG Open Letter – April 11, 2014

April 11th, 2014

Summer Kids Camps 2014 – Scholarship Program Donations – Update #2 Read the rest of this entry »

FOGG Alert – April 3, 2014

April 4th, 2014

Robert Vergara Needs Our Help!! Read the rest of this entry »

FOGG Open Letter – March 16, 2014

March 15th, 2014

Summer Kids Camps 2014 – Scholarship Program Donations – Update #1 Read the rest of this entry »