Office of Supervisor Sophie Maxwell
San Francisco Planning Department
Visitacion Valley Planning Alliance
Urban Ecology

The Schlage Lock factory site is located in the heart of San Francisco’s Visitacion Val- ley, next to the neighborhood’s commer- cial street and a proposed light rail depot. The Visitacion Valley Planning Alliance, concerned about the impact of a pro- posed Home Depot store on local busi- nesses and traffic, conducted a survey of over 400 residents to gain a sense of the community’s priorities.

During a weekend charrette, Urban Ecol- ogy and community members created two alternative proposals that capture the site’s potential and build on the neighborhood’s sense of community through careful design. Home Depot’s proposal dedicated 14 acres of land to an auto-oriented, single retail use, undermin- ing Visitacion Valley’s neighborhood identity. Our two alternatives paint a dif- ferent picture, including plans for afford- able housing, a local grocery, a diversity of retail and office space, and a City College extension. One design reuses existing buildings and accommodates a large com- mercial space with structured parking, as well as 150 units of housing and new uses that could provide up to 900 jobs. The second concept proposes all new con- struction, with 200 units of housing and up to 770 jobs.

The drawings sparked interest in a fuller planning process in Visitacion Valley. With the leadership of Supervisor Sophie Max- well, a planning process was launched in 2001 to build consensus about the Schlage Lock site. Two hundred and fifty people attended two workshops led by Urban Ecology in November 2001 to discuss community goals and challenges, and de- velop a framework for new development. With the SF Planning Department, new zoning for Schlage Lock will be completed in June 2002.