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Welcome to This San Francisco! I’m Alex Mullaney and I'll be your guide. Our twice-weekly email gets you up to speed on what’s new in The City. As always, please share it with a friend! We rely on word of mouth.

Scheduling Note: While I'm away on vacation, This San Francisco will pause until Tuesday, Dec. 18. Until then!

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A new bill may impact San Francisco's low-density areas.

On Monday, State Sen. Scott Wiener, D-San Francisco, introduced a new version of his controversial proposal to increase housing near transit by allowing higher-density buildings.

If made law, Senate Bill 50 would give the state more power over land-use decisions, making it possible for developers to bypass local low-density zoning restrictions so long as the developments are near public transit or job centers.

The previous version stalled earlier this year after stoking opposition from labor, environmental and building groups.

To make it more amenable, Wiener included protections against displacement, increased zoning density near job centers and public transit and added a delay in implementation for vulnerable communities.

“California’s failure to allow for enough housing near job centers and public transportation is undermining the state’s climate goals and increasing wildfire risk,” Wiener's spokesperson Victor Ruiz-Cornejo stated in a news release.

Earlier this year, Assemblyman Phil Ting, D-San Francisco, put forth a bill to ban the sale of new gas-powered cars by 2040. It stalled. Back from the drawing table, Ting introduced an updated version calling for the Air Resources Board to develop a “comprehensive strategy” by 2021 that will require that all new cars sold in California are emission-free by 2040.

+ Nine assemblymembers have put forward Assembly Bill 18, a new gun sales tax that would benefit violence prevention programs. Ting and David Chiu (D-San Francisco) are among its co-authors.


Max Ray Vision, a San Francisco hacker serving a 13-year prison sentence, has been charged for using a smuggled cell phone to steal debit card accounts and then use the profits to smuggle contraband into the prison yard by — what else? — drone.


"Our findings are disturbing, given that poorer neighborhoods have higher rates of disease and other structural disparities for health-care access. Whether or not a patient survives cardiac arrest can depend on a matter of minutes," wrote Dr. Renee Hsia of the University of California, San Francisco. She is co-author of a new study on how long it takes heart-attack victims in low-income areas to be transported to the hospital.

The Neighborhoods


A homeless drop-in center at the United Council for Human Services, better known as Mother Brown’s, is one of the few options for shelters in a neighborhood with the second highest number of unhoused people. For years, homeless advocates and community members have struggled over where new shelters and service providers ought to be located. A new supervisor and funds from a new tax may soon bring the conflict to the fore.


South of Market

After 60 days, the labor strike at the Marriott’s seven hotels are over as of late yesterday. The new agreement includes wage increases and better job security protections and health care coverage, according to Unite Here Local 2, which represents the nearly 2,500 striking workers.


Cow Hollow

Famed restaurateur Michael Mina is opening Indie Superette, a 700-square-foot speciality market that will offer fast and healthy fare like salads, acai bowls and smoothies.

Made by True, a beef jerky manufacturer founded in 2015, took over a ground-floor space on Union Street last year and is turning a portion into a pop-up shop.


Treasure Island

Circus Bella’s new show “Kaleidoscope” is strikingly old-fashioned: Clowns, jugglers, a trapeze all under a big tent.



Another Planet Entertainment and the San Francisco Recreation and Parks Department struck a deal that would extend Outside Lands through 2031. The annual three-day music festival’s agreement is set to expire in 2021.



The Tenderloin Museum’s new Matchbook Map Exhibit will feature a searchable map that connects matchbook imagery to information about the historic associated businesses. It’s tied to the released of The Match Book: Vintage Matchbooks from San Francisco’s Tenderloin.

The Columnists
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Joe Fitzgerald Rodriguez, On Guard: Two pills in a pod: Petrelis disrupts former Chron columnist Chuck Nevius’ stage show

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Heather Knight, On San Francisco: SF crime epidemic: ‘Porch pirates’ swiping packages from doorsteps

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Phil Matier and Andy Ross, Matier & Ross: Pelosi won speaker nomination because she worked for it — 1 more vote to go

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Phil Matier and Andy Ross, Matier & Ross: Hard to cut down on auto emissions when commuters travel longer distances

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Sally Stephens: New Mars lander will help answer deep questions

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Carl Nolte, Native Son: John’s Grill in the city’s heart for 110 years

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Willie Brown, Willie’s World: What Robert Mueller must be thinking: I signed up for this?

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Joe Eskenazi: La Victoria bakery is dead. And the attempts to resurrect it are half-baked.