San Francisco Nonprofit to Transform Former Big Lots into Affordable Senior Housing Oasis at Bernal Heights

San Francisco Nonprofit to Transform Former Big Lots into Affordable Senior Housing Oasis at Bernal HeightsSource: Google Street View
Nina Singh-Hudson
Published on February 10, 2024

In a clear push to address San Francisco's affordable housing crisis, a local nonprofit organization spearheads a project to turn an old Big Lots location into a new sanctuary for low-income seniors. The Bernal Heights Neighborhood Center (BHNC) has filed preliminary plans to construct a 70-unit affordable housing development at 3333 Mission St., the former site of a Big Lots store, which shuttered its doors in August 2022.

The sought-after project aims to provide much-needed housing options for seniors and includes plans for a public park, community room, and retail space. With a purchase price of $2,050,000 for the property, as reported by The SF Standard, the BHNC is now setting the stage for development.

This intended sanctuary for seniors is strategically targeted at those with incomes ranging between 30% and 120% of the area median income, following the organization's commitment to affordability. "We are excited to have begun the entitlement process for a mixed-use residential development," BHNC director Gina Dacus said in a statement covered by The SF Standard. To bring this vision to fruition, the center hopes to utilize California's density bonus program, SB 35, which expedites the approval process for housing projects emphasizing affordability.

The plans indicate that the proposed building will be erected “podium style,” featuring 42 parking spaces at the building's base. While this innovative development takes center stage, an aspect of the neighborhood's history remains — the 49 existing apartments atop the commercial space are slated to stay intact, as confirmed by the filed application. In another stride by the BHNC down the road, they are laying the groundwork for more affordable housing at the site of the former 3300 Club, a venue damaged by fire in 2016, according to SFist.