The same day that we hear about signs of life at a large residential project at Van Ness and Market, another long-stalled, presumed-dead development project on Divisadero appears to be stirring awake as well.

A project at the former Touchless Car Wash site at 400 Divisadero (at Oak Street), which was abandoned by its previous developer in the fall of 2022, looks to have a replacement project in the works, as the SF Business Times reports.

Something has apparently been taking shape for over six months now, per the Business Times, with Irvine-based 4Terra Investments in talks with property owners Roy and Patricia Shimek since this past fall. 4Terra has now submitted plans to the city for an eight-story, 203-unit apartment building with 23 affordable units on site.

The previous developer, Texas-based Genesis Real Estate Group, received its approvals for a 186-unit apartment building in 2019, only to drop those plans three years later citing a sluggish local rental market and rising costs.

Similarly to the new developer at the One Oak site at Van Ness and Market which we told you about earlier, 4Terra appears to be taking advantage of the temporarily relaxed affordable housing mandate that city supervisors approved last summer, in order to increase the financial feasibility of the project.

The new proposed development has about 10% more units than the previously proposed one at 400 Divis, and about two-thirds as many affordable units, as the Business Times notes. It's also proposed at two stories taller than the previous, six-story project.

Affordable housing advocates will decry this as another example of the city making it too easy for market-rate housing developers, but the fact remains that economic conditions have stalled large residential development all over the city. Developers will argue that under the previous affordable mandates — put in place during a boom time in the city — most rental products don't currently "pencil" due to a soft rental market and high construction costs.

4Terra specializes in student housing and rental apartments, and the new proposed project at 400 Divisadero would be a mix of one- and two-bedroom apartments. Also, there would be

4Terra previously built L Seven, a 410-unit apartment project on Harrison Street in SoMa.

The Touchless Car Wash operation on Divisadero, long famous among Burning Man attendees for their post-playa hose-down specials, and for its well-stocked gift shop, closed mid-pandemic in late 2021.

Rendering by BDE Architecture