1 of the Bay Area’s richest inhabitants purchased a fixer-upper. But neighbors say it doesn’t need repairing

The Petaluma fixer-higher bought by a single of the wealthiest men in the Bay Place doesn’t genuinely want fixing up, some of his new neighbors say.

Not if it implies allowing 80 dump trucks haul absent 10,000 cubic feet of filth for the subsequent year or so to allow for the house to double in size and to allow development of a 4,200-square-foot underground garage and basement, two substantial stroll-in closets and a dining home that can seat 25 friends.

The historic 115-yr-aged household on Sixth Street, just south of downtown, was acquired four many years ago by Peter Haas Jr., an heir to the Levi Strauss trousers empire, and his wife, Ginnie. Nipping and tucking may well operate in the spouse and children genes, but the alterations to the house have got some of his neighbors feeling bluer than a pair of the family’s legendary trousers.

“We labored difficult to arrive up with a approach to provide a historic property back to its glory,” Haas explained. “We want to stay in it for the rest of our life. Petaluma is this sort of a vivid, flourishing community.”

“This challenge proposes a entire transformation of the primary framework to fit the extravagant dreams of its new proprietors,” said Elsa Beatty of Preserve Petaluma, a group opposing the approach.

Posters and flyers proclaiming “Stop the Large Dig” are popping up all over city, in progress of a Dec. 21 conference of the Town Council. There the program — previously accredited by planners and the city’s historic preservation committee — faces a final vote.

A peek at the blueprints filed with the town exhibits the bold changes Haas has in thoughts for the classy gray two-story Victorian developed a lot more than a century back by famous Petaluma architect Brainerd Jones.

Absent will be 4 of the home’s six bedrooms. Scheduled for demolition are fireplaces, balustrades, roofs, staircases, a chimney and a dormer roof window.

In their put are to be a pair of 10-foot-by-10-foot closets (labeled “Pete’s closet” and “Ginnie’s closet”), a 25-seat dining area, an 11-seat breakfast area, an elevator, a wine cellar, a mudroom, a powder area, a barbecue porch with two grills and a turntable to enable four autos to maneuver into the new basement parking garage.

A proposed best-flooring deck that will exchange the dormer will provide “unimpeded sights into at least six neighboring backyards,” complained Protect Petaluma on its web-site.

Haas, 73, grandson of the late Levi Strauss president Walter A. Haas and himself a former president of the business, claimed he worked intently with his architects and with the town on his ideas and can’t understand the controversy.

“Most people today seem at this and say they aid it, or they say what’s the large offer,” he reported. ”I recognize that a neighbor would not be delighted with design going on subsequent to his dwelling for a period of time. But when it is performed, it will be regular with the look and experience of the community. If you stood in the road, you would not see something distinctive.”

Invoice Wolpert, the project’s architect, mentioned he suspected that opposition to the renovations, which mystified him, was driven by fears that the residence will be “some sort of company amusement dwelling — and it is not.”

He has already altered his blueprints, he reported, to accommodate critics who objected to the sunroom and to the proximity of the barbecue grills to the neighbors’ home.

The renovations, he reported, would value “over $1 million, which is not genuinely a large amount of funds for a undertaking with this substantially do the job.” And he reported he understood of no policies towards massive eating rooms or significant closets, if which is what the shopper asks for.

In a assertion, Protect Petaluma taken care of that the preservation committee and city preparing section confirmed a “complete absence of assist for historic and cultural preservation” in approving the Haas designs, which, it said, would “essentially intestine and without end change the character of this house and encompassing surroundings.”

Maintain Petaluma founder Margie Turrel, who is also the Haases’ up coming-doorway neighbor, mentioned she and many others started off the team in July after she and Peter Haas differed above his approach for the barbecue deck that immediately adjoined her residence.

“I thought smoke and odors would permeate from the cooking region,” she stated. “I questioned him politely if he would go it and he unpolitely claimed he would not.”

Turrel extra that the ideas for the barbecue deck referred to as for it to be elevated 5 ft off the floor. That intended, she stated, that the toes of the Haases and their attendees would be straight opposite the heads of the Turrels on the other facet of the fence.

Turrel claimed she “welcomed the Haases as neighbors,” but thinks the sizing and scope of the renovations are “out of scale with adjacent households.”

Neighbors seemed divided about whether or not to enable the trousers magnate do his factor.

“Some of my customers are for it and some are towards it,” claimed Don Gossage, whose barbershop is two blocks from the project web site. “A ton of people don’t treatment. Some say this guy’s bought a lot more funds than brains. Most of the time we talk sporting activities all around in this article, not old houses.”

Restaurateur Tara Williams, proprietor of the nearby Cafe Zazzle, stated what ever Haas needs to do is Okay with her. She said the architect’s drawings for the task don’t look to change the house’s appears to be.

“I truly feel a good deal of the people today who are from it are just freaked out by change,” she stated. “I do not dwell in that community so it does not actually make a difference to me. And digging to create the underground garage is not any deeper than digging to establish a swimming pool.”

Steve Rubenstein is a San Francisco Chronicle personnel author. Email: [email protected] Twitter: @SteveRubeSF

Next Post

Top Sales Show How Pandemic Continues to Influence the Market

Several more Manhattan townhouse sales closed in December, many at holiday-style discounts. The priciest were in Greenwich Village. A stately house at 14 East 11th Street closed at $28 million and was the month’s most expensive transaction in New York City; and a house at 111 Waverly Place went for […]

You May Like