The San Francisco Building and Construction Trades Council and San Mateo County Building Trades Council hosted a series of meetings with Bay Area legislators in Sacramento April 25, along with the San Francisco Labor Council and San Mateo County Central Labor Council. Representatives from the building trades and public and private sector unions asked State Senators Scott Wiener and Jerry Hill and Assemblymembers David Chiu, Phil Ting, Kevin Mullin and Marc Berman to support the labor-backed bills.
The U.S. Congress approved a federal budget package in early May for 2017 that includes $100 million for Caltrain's Peninsula Corridor Electrification Project (PCEP). The Federal Transit Administration (FTA) in February held up the release of a $647 million federal grant for the PCEP at the request of a group of California Republican Congressmembers claiming to be concerned about cost overruns for high speed rail, led by House majority leader Kevin McCarthy, a longtime opponent of high speed rail.
Construction is nearing completion on the new home for the Commonwealth Club on San Francisco's historic waterfront at 110 The Embarcadero. The Commonwealth Club has served as a forum for speakers – including political leaders, scientists, activists, economists, writers, and business leaders – for 125 years, but has not had its own building.
Building and Construction Trades union members and elected officials joined developers Boston Properties, Inc. and Hines on April 6 to celebrate the topping off of the Salesforce Tower, which is now the tallest building in San Francisco at 1,070 feet. Construction for the Salesforce Tower began in 2013; the project has employed as many as 700 construction workers per day, according to the developers.
North America’s Building Trades Unions (NABTU) held its Legislative Conference in Washington, D.C., from April 2 to April 5, where Building Trades union members got an opportunity to learn about important legislation and meet with members of Congress to build support for building trades issues.
General contractor Lendlease has begun preliminary site work at Tishman Speyer’s Folsom Bay Tower project at 160 Folsom in the Transbay Transit District. Work before the official groundbreaking includes pile cap removal, excavation and grading. The San Francisco Board of Supervisors approved unanimously a height increase for the residential tower from 300 feet to 400 feet last April, which will allow Tishman Speyer to build a 39-story tower with an additional 73 housing units.
The San Francisco Planning Commission unanimously approved the 36-story, mixed-use, 385-foot tall high-rise tower proposed for 555 Howard Street at its March 2 meeting. The project by developers SKS Investments and Pacific Eagle involves the removal of three buildings and the new construction of approximately 437,251 gross square feet in size.
Supervisor Mark Farrell introduced legislation in February to require a citywide Project Labor Agreement (PLA) for public work or improvement projects with projected costs over $1 million.