STAR Real Estate Committee

UPDATE and HISTORY   August 2013

For many years the San Francisco Redevelopment Agency was in charge of the Hunters
Point/Candlestick re-development project, negotiating with their chosen master developer,
Lennar Corp. as they developed the plans and agreement for the work to be done.
The plans call for more than 10,000 units of housing, built over 20+ years as well
as commercial development and a lot of green, open space.

The plan also calls for preserving the existing community of artists in Building
 101 and also calls for Lennar to build a new studio building for all artists who
currently work in buildings  that will be torn down for the bigger project. The
new building must be  in place before any artist's buildings can be removed. This
is part of  the DDA, the governing document of the process of the development of
 the  Shipyard, signed by Lennar and by the appropriate San Francisco  officials.

But, no one imagined that the Redevelopment Agency would be dissolved by the State
of California. The Redevelopment Agency was to be the long-term property owner of
the studios, as well as other parcels of land in the project area. The Successor
 Agency to the Redevelopment Agency is now called the Office of Community Investment
and Infrastructure, or OCII. The people are the same, Wells Lawson, Thor Kaslofsky
and Amabel Akwa-Asare, and the plan for the artists remains intact.

According to the State of California, the Successor Agency, or OCII, has to construct
a plan for dispersal of all real estate that the Agency holds. This includes our
 studios. The question of who the new owner will be has been a large part of what
STAR has been doing for the last several months. At first, it seemed that the buildings
could be given to a non-profit, like STAR. But later state regulation clarifications
made it clear that was not possible.

The current thinking is that the buildings might pass on to the City of San Francisco
( the specifics are unclear) and that one option is for STAR to take the master
lease for long-term control of the buildings. STAR would then be responsible for
 sub-contracting the property management business to an experienced operation, most
likely the current managers, the Terzians. STAR, representing the best interests
 of the Shipyard artists, would set management guidelines including rent levels
and requirements for tenants. Every decision would be made in the effort to keep
 rents as affordable as possible for as many people as possible for the long-term.

There are many steps along the way. First, the OCII has to submit a plan for their
real estate to the State Dept. of Finance for approval. No one knows how long this
might take, one year, two years? In the meantime, there will be change. The new
building for Eclectic Cookery will be built next to Building 101, then 110 will
be torn down to start construction of the new studio building.

While all this is going on, STAR is meeting with OCII and with various consultants
that OCII has provided to us to learn about commercial property management. STAR
 also is working to grow our Board and take on new responsibilities for programs
 both for Shipyard artists and for the larger community. Programs are what will
allow us to demonstrate the community benefit that the studios provide. Programs
 are also what will give us some breaks on property tax, one of the larger elements
of rent in the buildings, in the future. In order for STAR to be a credible organization
eligible for the master lease, we need to grow our activities, our budget and our
profile.

STAR will continue to work on the development of the new studio building and with
the group of artists who have been involved for the last few years. We will communicate
with the entire community as clearly as we can what we know.

Karen Slater,  Chair - STAR Real Estate Committee

 

STAR REAL ESTATE COMMITTEE:

Karen Slater, Chair

Marti McKee

Stacey Carter