San Francisco is All A-Twitter about Mid-Market Redevelopment

If you follow development news or live anywhere near San Francisco, CA, you may have heard that social media start-up wunderkind Twitter is moving its headquarters to an area of San Francisco politely referred to as “Mid-Market”.

The idea is that Twitter’s current glamor-quotient plus massive predicted growth in the near future will revitalize the neighborhood. Many, many small start-ups have admitted that they chose their office space based on proximity to Twitter – not an uncommon phenomenon in a corporate world in which networking is king.

Of course, Twitter is getting a hefty payroll tax cut from the city in exchange for its Mid-Market lease.  And that’s as it should be, because “Mid-Market” is euphemistic real estate slang for “Tenderloin”.

The Tenderloin district’s infamous reputation as a festering nest of sex offenders, pretty crime, TB, and general decrepitude is long-standing. Supposedly the area got its name from the fact that 19th century police were awarded extra pay for working in the area and were thus able to bring home more expensive cuts of meat. Because the area is almost smack in the middle of San Francisco, its rehabilitation is both crucial and extremely difficult.

Where police have failed, city council members hope that Twitter will succeed. Considering that Twitter expects to expand its workforce enormously in the next few years, that hope may well be justified.

It’s also possible that property values – particularly apartment rental prices, which are already on the rise – could be boosted significantly. The Tenderloin is home to many, many gorgeous Victorians in varying states of disrepair – some of the last apartments in SF for under $1000/month.

If you’re an investor, it might be a great time to snap up an apartment building. If you’re a Twitter employee, it might be a great time to get in there and grab an apartment so rent control can kick in.


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