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'Eyesore' to 'elegance': Marina luxury condos going up on former Chevron station sites

Two shuttered Chevron stations in San Francisco’s swanky Marina district are being gassed up for new lives as luxury condos.

DM Development, a San Francisco-based real estate firm, is developing the locations at 2465 Van Ness Ave. and 2301 Lombard St. The two buildings were designed by Handel Architects, the firm behind some of the highest-profile luxury residential towers in the city.

“We viewed these sites as really prime residential opportunities in some of the most sought after and iconic neighborhoods in San Francisco where very little high-density development is possible,” said DM Development Managing Partner Mark MacDonald.

The Marina has seen a dearth of new housing development, meaning that the 41 units at the seven-story 2465 Van Ness Ave. building qualify it as the largest residential project in the neighborhood in two decades. The four-story building at 2301 Lombard St. is planned for 22 units.

DM Development closed on $35 million in equity financing for both sites, which are scheduled to start construction in late 2017 and be completed in 2019. The two sites were sold for $15 million, according to planning documents.

Gas stations sites have emerged as candidates for redevelopment as high-end residential real estate. The previous service station at 2465 Van Ness shut down in 2009 and the lot at 2301 has been closed for more than a decade.

“People want these sites redeveloped. They’ve been sitting fallow with chain-link fences around them and have really been a blight and an eyesore,” MacDonald said.

Even existing gas stations aren’t exempt from developer’s eyes, with plans in the works to raze and build on a Shell gas station site at 905 Folsom St. and a parcel on the northwest corner of First and Harrison, currently occupied by a Union 76 station. Another 76 gas station at the corner of 25th and California streets in the Richmond District is slated for condos while one at 44th and Noriega is also proposing a conversion to residential development. On the southwest corner of Geary and Stanyan, a 76 station was recently torn down and condo building is rising in its place.

DM Development has been known for building boldly designed projects, like Hayes Valley’s 8 Octavia and the two sites in the Marina are no exception.

“For the 2465 Van Ness site we were really seeking to create design with elegance that combined traditional materials like stone and wood along with metals on the exterior in a way that was more contemporary,” MacDonald said. “On Lombard, we’re seeking to play off the sinuating lines of the Bay and the Marin Headlands.”

Both feature ground-level commercial space along with common roof desks to take advantage of prime views of the bay and iconic San Francisco landmarks like the Golden Gate Bridge and Alcatraz.

Currently, DM Development has a handful of other residential projects in the pipeline in the Dogpatch and Hayes Valley, notably a 69-unit mid-rise condo buildings at 815 Tennessee, which broke ground earlier this year, and a 71-unit development at 2290 Third St., which is set to start construction in the next few months.