UCSF agrees to build more than 1,200 homes as huge Parnassus project moves forward

UCSF and San Francisco have agreed on a proposed benefits package that includes building more than 1,200 homes for the medical center's workforce.

UCSF and the city of San Francisco have reached an agreement on a project to improve housing, transit and jobs programs as part of its plan to expand and update its Parnassus Heights campus. 

The proposed package includes 1,263 new houses for the UCSF workforce, with 40 percent of all new and existing homes designated as affordable units. The boost also includes $20 million in transportation improvements and a 30 percent target for local hires in construction and permanent entry-level jobs.  

"This pandemic has shown that not only do we need a strong healthcare system in place to care for our residents, but that these long-term projects with well-paying jobs and affordable housing are essential to keeping our economy strong in this City," San Francisco Mayor London Breed said.

UCSF is building a new hospital at Parnassus Heights to replace the 70-year-old Moffit Hospital, which can’t keep up due to limited bed capacity. It’s projected to open in 2030 with 200 additional inpatient beds, a 42 percent increase for the medical center. When it opens, UCSF plans to have at least 50 percent of the new housing units ready. 

For employees and trainees earning 120 percent or less of the area median income, UCSF will make 1,000 homes affordable over the 10-year life of the plan. Half of those units will be set aside for staff earning 90 percent AMI or less. The affordable housing agreement will be in place until 2080.

"From the 1906 earthquake to the HIV epidemic to COVID-19, UCSF has been a crucial player in providing healthcare, training programs and research that are recognized around the world," Assemblymember Phil Ting (D-San Francisco) said in a release.  "The Parnassus Heights project makes certain this important work and legacy will continue. The new agreement is a shining example of how community investment can be more inclusive." 

For transportation improvements, UCSF pledged $20 million as they work with SFMTA to offer alternatives to car travel. Also included in the proposal are additional behavioral health benefits, like expanding opportunities for marginalized and underrepresented populations in the field. The plan is expected to create over 4,000 permanent jobs in the next decade.

The city will present the details of this package at a community meeting this week before it goes to the Planning Commission and Board of Supervisors for a vote. 

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