Oceanwide Holdings pauses construction on ‘troubled’ $1.6 billion San Francisco project: SF Business Times

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Oceanwide Center - First Street Tower View. Photo courtesy of Oceanwide Center. (PRNewsfoto)

Beijing-based Oceanwide Holdings has temporarily paused construction of its troubled $1.6 billion Oceanwide Center project in downtown San Francisco as a result of the Covid-19 pandemic, The San Fransisco Business Times reports.

The developer, “facing liens and lawsuits related to the project and widely believed to be short on cash”, according to the Business Times, confirmed the news in a statement to the business publication on Oct. 28.

“While Oceanwide continues to be committed to building this landmark project, due to unforeseen circumstances resulting from the Covid-19 pandemic, we have decided to temporarily suspend vertical construction activities,” the statement said. “At present, we are pleased to share that the ground floor concrete structure has been successfully completed, concluding construction of the foundation structures. We are hopeful the that full vertical construction will resume within 2-3 months.”

The two-tower, 2 million-sq. ft. development is under construction at First and Mission streets. One of the towers, at 910 ft. with office and residential space, would be the city’s second tallest skyscraper after the 1,070 sq. ft. Salesforce Tower.

The Business Times said Oceanwide halted construction one year ago on the shorter of the two towers, slated to be a Waldorf Astoria hotel and residences, citing economic conditions, and the project has been plagued by problems.

“It currently is under contract to Hony Capital — a Beijing-based private equity firm that agreed to buy the development site this spring for $1.2 billion — but that sale has been delayed twice because of the pandemic,” the publication reported. “The most recent extension on the deadline to close was granted in September, and the deal is now expected to close on Dec. 31.”

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