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Market Overview of Department of Transportation Showplace Square Area
Freeway Lease Site

Client: Airspace Development Branch, Division of Right of Way, State of California, Department of Transportation
dashed line separator The California Department of Transportation (Caltrans) engaged Gruen Gruen + Associates (GG+A) to evaluate the market for approximately nine acres of land that Caltrans owned underneath and surrounding freeways in the "Showplace Square" region of San Francisco. The Caltrans land was leased for short-term parking uses at the time, in 1986, when GG+A was asked to evaluate land use demands. The GG+A study concluded that there were significant demands for office, showroom and retail space that could be captured on the site. The potential value of the land could be raised from less than $25.00 per square foot to at least $75.00.

In the course of conducting the market study, GG+A also found that adjoining property owners and space users had asked the City to permanently zone the Caltrans site for parking use only. GG+A met with City staff and Caltrans after which the local Caltrans District and the California Transportation Commission wrote to the City asking that the site not be zoned for parking use exclusively. The City agreed to study the issue further and develop a new amended Master Plan that would recognize the market potentials identified by GG+A. Caltrans officials and GG+A worked with the City to assist in planning for an amended Master Plan.

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