cityscape in SF

SPUR 2023 Annual Report

The Changing City

sf cityscape

Office-to-Residential Conversion in SF’s Changing Real Estate Market

Can converting office space to residential use help with downtown revitalization?

houses in sf

Losing Ground

What the housing crisis means for middle-income households and racial inequality


How California Can Help Transit Survive and Thrive

SPUR leads a coalition urging CA to provide necessary funding for transit

grocery shoppers

Making Temporary Food Benefits Programs Permanent

SPUR’s efforts to lessen a hunger crisis that is set to worsen

SPUR 2023 Annual Report

Annual Report /
This year SPUR began the work of reimagining cities to meet the needs of a post-pandemic world. We explored how downtowns can become central social districts. We worked to sustain essential transit service while pushing for progress toward a single regional transit system. We spearheaded the movement to decarbonize the region’s buildings and worked to make it easier to build much-needed housing.

New Findings on Shallow Groundwater Rise Highlight a Climate Risk Not Addressed by Policy

News /
The Bay Area’s climate change adaptation strategies don’t reflect — and might even worsen — the impacts of coastal groundwater rise, which is expected to accelerate with sea level rise as the climate warms. New findings on groundwater rise point to multiple potential risks: degradation of underground infrastructure, movement of underground contaminants left by industrial activities, and an increase in liquefaction during earthquakes. The region’s coastal areas may need a new adaptation paradigm.

How Updating CEQA Can Keep Sustainable Transportation Projects on Track: Q&A with Laura Tolkoff

News /
The California Environmental Quality Act (CEQA) is intended to protect people and places from the environmental impacts of new development and infrastructure. But it has not been designed to protect against a rapidly warming climate, and ironically, it has sometimes been used to block projects aimed at doing so. SPUR Transportation Policy Director Laura Tolkoff recently testified before a state committee on possible reforms to the law.

Two State Bills Aim to Shore Up the Food Safety Net

News /
The convergence of high food prices and the end of CalFresh emergency allotments is hitting low-income Californians hard. SPUR is co-sponsoring two bills to keep struggling households from slipping through the food safety net. Both would make proven pilots into permanent benefits that reduce hunger and improve public health.

Office-to-Residential Conversion in San Francisco’s Changing Real Estate Market

Downtown San Francisco’s post-pandemic recovery is hindered by a lack of economic diversity and a shortage of workforce housing. Could converting vacant office space to residential use be a financially viable solution to both problems? In a first-of-its-kind study in San Francisco, SPUR, ULI San Francisco, Gensler and HR&A Advisors explored the physical and financial feasibility of redeveloping office buildings into housing, and identified policy tools to facilitate conversion.