Bars in the city where you can still drink on the cheap are slowly getting picked off, one by one, and the latest that appears to be in the sights of potential developers is Blondie's (540 Valencia Street), where every martini is the equivalent of three martinis. The place isn't in danger of closing in the immediate future, however as Socketsite points out, the building it's in just went on the market and the site is zoned for more height.
The building is listed for $2.1 million and is also home to two 3-bedroom apartments on the floors above the bar. The listing notes that the building is zoned for up to 55 feet, however, which could mean two or three more floors of residential, with a high potential for profit given the location.
Blondie's, whose website touts that it's been "serving the best marini's [sic] since 1991," certainly qualifies as one of the OG businesses of the modern Valencia corridor, dating back to the days of the original Slanted Door (584 Valencia) when the Mission was still plenty dicey and just barely starting to attract the pioneers of its gentrification wave, which included Pauline's Pizza (1987), Ti Couz (1992), Bi-Rite (revamped in 1997), and Delfina (1998).
Assuming the building sells, however, there would still be a very lengthy approvals process before anything new could be built here, so you're likely still looking at another couple good years of $14, 12-plus-ounce martinis that come with an extra few ounces in a shaker, making these some of the cheapest stiff drinks down (bearing in mind that a standard martini is 3 ounces). Whereas over at Lucky 13 near Church Street, development plans have already been submitted and things are a bit further along.
Please don't let the 500 Club be next.