Author Archives: NightlifeSF

Understanding New Construction Projects in Your Neighborhood

New construction projects are bringing much-needed housing to San Francisco, but you may have questions or concerns about the impact that a particular project might have on your nearby nightlife business.

In order to address any concerns you might have, it’s important to engage with the developer of the project and the San Francisco Planning Department; engagement can be most effective if it happens as early in the planning process as possible. Thankfully, the Planning Department offers a number of tools that can help keep you informed about construction projects in your neighborhood.

Learning about New Projects

A Block Book Notice (BBN) will provide you with notifications from the Planning Department about most significant permit applications filed for a specific lot in San Francisco (including new construction, changes of use, and additions). A BBN may be established for an annual fee of $35 for the first lot and $14 for each additional lot; a registered neighborhood group that has been active for at least two years may establish BBN notifications for $35 for the first block and $14 for each additional block. You can request a BBN using this form.

In many parts of the City, new construction projects require a “Pre-Application Meeting” with immediately adjacent or nearby tenants and property owners, as well as neighborhood groups registered with the Planning Department in that neighborhood.

  • Organizations, businesses, and individuals may sign up as neighborhood groups in order to receive notification of these meetings. You can sign up to receive these notifications for free by completing this form.
  • For a list of neighborhood groups currently receiving notifications, see this page.
  • This publication provides more information on the Planning Department’s project notification requirements, including Pre-Application Meetings.

Additionally, a medium or large development project (including any project that would create 6 or more residential units) requires a Preliminary Project Assessment (PPA), during which the Planning Department conducts a preliminary review of the proposed project and issues a detailed letter describing the anticipated review process for, and salient issues about, the proposal.

If you are interested in learning more about active permits in your neighborhood, the Planning Department maintains a map identifying permit applications currently being processed by Planning or by the Department of Building Inspection, as well as permits approved within the last year.

Other Property Information and Notifications

Interested in information about the zoning or permit history for a particular property? You can find out a great deal of information about any property in San Francisco using the Planning Department’s Property Information Map.

You can also sign up to receive updates from the Planning Department about Planning Commission hearings, citywide policy issues, and other significant planning initiatives. Sign up to receive these emails on the Planning Department’s web site.

Moving Forward

If you are concerned about the impact of a prospective development on your business, contact the project developer and the Planning Department. You can find out which City Planner is assigned to any current project by searching the map of active permits.

Unsure who to contact at the Planning Department? Planners at the Planning Information Center are available to field your questions in person and over the telephone during most business hours. Find the contact information and exact operating hours of the Planning Information Center on the Planning Department’s web site.

If you are interested in learning more about the issues facing your neighborhood, or are looking for information about local neighborhood associations, contact your District Supervisor’s office. You can find your Supervisor using SF Find.

Welcome to NightlifeSF

San Francisco’s nightlife and entertainment sector – which includes restaurants, bars, nightclubs, live music venues, and other performance spaces – is an integral part of the City’s fabric. Nightlife and entertainment businesses attract residents and visitors to our diverse neighborhoods and provide social spaces that are critical to the development of our unique and vibrant cultural life.

Nightlife isn’t just a cultural benefit; it’s also a major economic driver within the City. The nightlife industry includes 3,200 businesses that create over 52,000 jobs citywide. According to a 2012 economic impact study, the sector accounts for $4.2 billion in spending by 80 million customers annually.

NightlifeSF collects resources to support prospective and existing nightlife businesses, resources for local musicians, and tools to help visitors and residents experience what San Francisco nightlife has to offer.

NightlifeSF is a project of the Office of Economic and Workforce Development. For more information about OEWD’s work to attract and support nightlife businesses across San Francisco, please contact:

Benjamin Van Houten
Project Manager, Nightlife & Entertainment Sector


The information on this site is maintained by the Office of Economic and Workforce Development. All information contained herein is expected to be accurate, complete and timely, but the City and County of San Francisco does not guarantee the accuracy, completeness or timeliness of this information. The City and County shall not be liable for any loss caused by reliance on such information, including, but not limited to, incidental or consequential damages arising out of the use of or inability to use this site.

Inclusion of a business or other entity in resources on this site does not constitute advice, endorsement or recommendation of the business or entity by the City and County of San Francisco. All critical information pertaining to any business or entity listed here should be independently verified. The City and County of San Francisco does not certify the authenticity of information that originates from third parties. In no event shall the City and County of San Francisco be liable for any damage or loss caused or alleged to be caused by or in connection with the use of any business or entity listed on this site.

Under no circumstances shall the City and County of San Francisco be liable for any actions taken or omissions made from reliance on any information contained herein from whatever source nor shall the City and County be liable for any other consequences from any such reliance.

Nightlife and New Tech: The State of the SF Music Scene

nightlife and new tech music scene poster

On Tuesday, February 4th, the Office of Economic Workforce Development joined with the San Francisco Entertainment Commission and WillCall to host the second in our “Nightlife and New Tech” series of events. A packed house of attendees joined a panel of music and tech insiders for a lively discussion about the state of the music scene in San Francisco. You can listen to the full audio of the event below.

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