Landlords say APEC security near SF’s Moscone Center will impact seniors

Secret Service will create screening zones during next month’s international conference

SF Landlords Say APEC Security Fences Will Impact Seniors
Broad overview of the Moscone Center area at 747 Howard Street (Moscone)

Seniors in eight apartment buildings around Moscone Center in San Francisco could go without meal and paratransit services because of heightened security during the Asia-Pacific Economic Cooperation summit. 

Landlords say residents are “very alarmed” about the stringent security by the nation’s Secret Service during the weeklong APEC conference next month at 747 Howard Street, the San Francisco Chronicle reported.

The global trade summit is expected to draw more than 20,000 guests, including executives, politicians and diplomats, to Downtown during the week of Nov. 12.

The Secret Service will close streets and transit stops in “security zones” in Yerba Buena and Nob Hill. “An impact to the normal daily lives of San Francisco residents and visitors is unavoidable,” Secret Service Special Agent Jeremy Brown told the Chronicle.

But the closed streets have sparked alarm among landlords, community advocates and residents. 

TODCO, a nonprofit owner of affordable housing, fired off a letter to the city’s Board of Supervisors demanding answers on the impact to critical services for residents. It says eight buildings with nearly 1,500 apartments will be behind security fences erected to keep out cars.

“Despite many months leading up to this mega event, the city has done no proper planning at all to, first, learn about, and then second plan for, the logistical needs for access and services for the 2,000 seniors living in the eight residences in (the Yerba Buena Center) neighborhood,” wrote TODCO President John Elberling.

People who live and operate businesses in the security zones will have to undergo a security screening, including a bag check, during the conference. A senior drop-in health center also lies within the security zone bounded by Market, Second, Fifth and Harrison streets.  

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The city has yet to address potential impacts to services targeting seniors, such as meal delivery programs and paratransit services, according to TODCO, which has four buildings with 577 units in the area.

Others include the 276-unit Clementina Towers at 330 Clementina Street, owned by the San Francisco Housing Authority; and the 257-unit Silvercrest Residence at 133 Shipley Street, owned by the Salvation Army.

The 206-unit Alexis Apartments at 390 Clementina Street, owned by St. Patrick’s Parish, and the 149-unit San Lorenzo Ruiz Center at 50 Rizal Street, are also in the zone.

Jeff Cretan, of Mayor London Breed’s office,  said the city’s Office of Economic and Workforce Development is “leading neighborhood outreach for businesses and merchants” and the city will offer a detailed response to TODCO’s concerns.

“While there is heightened security, residents and the public will still have access to the area, and deliveries and other services will still be allowed,” Cretan told the Chronicle.

— Dana Bartholomew

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