These two new blocks of affordable family housing at Hunters View are part of the first phase of San Francisco’s ambitious HOPE SF program to rebuild the worst of San Francisco’s deteriorated, crime- ridden public housing. With a mix of affordable and market-rate housing, the Hunters View Redevelopment is being completed in three phases in order to allow the existing tenants to remain in the neighborhood. Our design for two city blocks organizes 53 units into two L-shaped buildings per block to form continuous street frontages and surround two secure shared courtyards. Each building contains stacked multi-level townhouses that step down with the street’s slope and reflect the scale, rhythm, and texture of San Francisco.
Our team held multiple community meetings with long-time Hunters View residents throughout the design process to identify their hopes for the project and address their concerns. Through our outreach, we identified key issues common to most residents that included: 1) Desire for connection to surrounding communities and jobs; 2) Anxiety about off-site relocation; 3) Need for improved security; and 4) Desire for healthy buildings with good indoor air quality and free of pests and mold.
With a combined gross area of 67,800 square feet and 53 units of family housing that include 2, 3, 4, and 5 bedroom units, each building contains multi-level and stacked multi-level units. Units are sited to take advantage of steep grade changes and allow residents to enter both the lower and upper units without the need to climb more than one flight of stairs. The apartment buildings are designed to look like groups of individual houses, each with private or shared entry stoops.
Throughout the site, safety and security are addressed by maintaining a combination of high visibility and spatial connections. Two openings into each mid-block courtyard are strategically located to provide maximum visibility from the street. The courtyards are the gathering spaces for each block. Common-use laundry and mailrooms are located off the courtyards as well as many unit entries. Feedback from residents has confirmed that the secure courtyards are helping them to get to know their neighbors and build a sense of safety and community within each block.
Sustainability is one of the core principles for the design of Hunters View, and guides the design of both the buildings and site. Hunters View is certified LEED for Neighborhood Development and individual buildings are Green Point Rated. Each sustainable practice applied to the comprehensive design and construction process helped ensure that the neighborhood and buildings are durable, energy efficient, and provide a high-quality healthy environment for Hunters View families.
Photography by Bruce Damonte