Ultra-affordable urban green housing?

It’s a brand new building. It’s in the heart of San Francisco. It’s incredibly affordable. It’s a certified green building. It has a roof deck with great views. But it’s probably not for you.

Eleven of the newly constructed Plaza Apartments units will have rents at 13% of area median income (AMI), sixteen at 35%, and the remaining 79 at 42%. Yes, there are government subsidies involved, but there are two main factors that allow such high-quality housing to be rented at such low cost:

– The units are brightly lit 300 s.f. mini-studios. Would you buy one for $99K if everything else was going for $250K? Many would. Those in Manhattan and Paris would kill for the opportunity.
– It’s located in an ‘up-and-coming-but-not-there-yet’ area in downtown San Francisco, the standard qualifier for nascent bohemian neighborhoods.

In other words, these are serious qualities to consider when providing true ‘artist housing’.

The building also happens to be a model for green building, with rooftop solar panels, 94% of the building materials recycled from landfill and previous construction, bamboo floors, natural lighting and energy-efficient appliances.

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