Twisting Tower High Rise to Emerge by the Bay Bridge
Studio Gang – an architecture and urban design firm with offices in Chicago, New York, and San Francisco – has released renders of the ‘Folsom Bay Tower,’ now renamed as MIRA in San Francisco’s South Beach area.
MIRA is described as the ‘twisting tower’ due to its rippled and corkscrewed design. It’s a 40-story, 392-unit high-rise, which began construction late 2017.
Developer Tishman Speyer floated a few new renderings of the building, showing off its corkscrew design from different perspectives and emphasizing its “right up on the Bay Bridge” Spear and Folsom location.
Architect Jeanne Gang says that the twisted trademark look “evolves the classic bay window, a familiar feature of San Francisco’s early houses, reimagining it in a high-rise context” and that the aim was to “make every residence a corner unit.” Gang’s other designs also often emphasize rippling and wavy motifs:
In San Francisco, you can’t put one brick on top of another without stirring up some hornet’s nest. Tishman Speyer, the developers behind MIRA, needed a 100-foot extension, which irritated a group called ‘Save Rincon Park’ as it would throw a shadow over the nearby park on certain days, which normally would be illegal, since in the ‘80s San Francisco outlawed developments that overshadow public parks.
As a solution, the developers say they’ll throw in an additional 44 below market-rate units, upping the total to 40% of the project. And rather than pile the BMR units into the bottom floors, as planned, the developers will spread them through levels 1-26 of the tower and they’ll even chip in some of the HOA fees for the BMR tenants. An affordable unit may cost around mid-$200k – mid-$400k.
Also nettled are residents at nearby Lumina, the twin-towered, 400-foot (on one end, anyway) condo complex at 201 Folsom, who complain that the Gang-designed building will block their million dollar view. (Lumina is also a Tishman Speyer building.) One Luminarian testified that he bought a unit on the top floor specifically on the promise that the neighboring development would rise only 300 feet, and a deal is a deal.
Such roadblocks are to be expected in big-money developments like this and the Planning Commission and Board of Supervisors are ready for these at the usual City Hall hearings.
Potential buyers for MIRA can now register their interest at mirasf.com. Move-ins are expected to begin in the late 2019.