SF Bay Area Fil-Ams slam new housing development over gentrification fears

SOUTH SAN FRANCISCO, Calif. – The South San Francisco Planning Commission approved a new housing development last night despite hearing numerous testimonies from concerned South San Francisco residents over gentrification.

This high density five story building will house 69 units to include one to two bedrooms along with 106 parking spots.

After deliberation with the planning commission, the developer volunteered to offer two additional units at below market rate, $15,000 in public art and $20,000 in community benefits.

“Commissioners asked intelligent questions giving full thoughts to all the public comments but I think they are doing the city a great service in approving the project,” said Edwin Law of Pinewave Development Group Inc.

Filipino Americans were among the many speakers who spoke out against the development.

Teachers, students, workers and many other concerned citizens say living in South City won’t be affordable soon if developments with high rents continue to be built.

“The Planning Commission just shows how much big money and big business is being heard over the people and gentrification is happening not just in San Francisco but in Daly City, South San Francisco and all over the peninsula where most of our people are living not just Filipinos but other people of color,” said Nikki Santiago-Victoria.

According to myapartmentmap.com, the average rent in South San Francisco for a one bedroom unit is $2,392.

“As one of the commissioners said the only way to solve this problem is to build more housing, create more competition and it’s just economics 101 when supply and demand is unbalanced you would have more stable rent for the whole area,” said Law.

“As much as I love my country I had to move to survive and now the same things are happening in the Bay Area where we live and I’m starting my own family and I don’t want to move again to another place only to be displaced again,” said Santiago-Victoria.

Despite the approval of the development, these south city residents say that they will continue to organize and educate the rest of their community in order to stop new developers and stay in this city that they call home.

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