Current Planning & Community Process

Over the past year, UCSF worked with neighbors and the UCSF community to develop a plan to re-envision Parnassus Heights. With their help, we developed a roadmap for future development called the UCSF Comprehensive Parnassus Heights Plan (CPHP).

The UCSF Comprehensive Parnassus Heights Plan aspires to improve the campus and better connect, integrate and serve the neighborhood. It provides the vision for the 30-year renovation of this historic site and includes community input captured in the Community Ideas Report that’s part of the plan and reflects the input of hundreds of internal and external stakeholders.

About the UCSF Comprehensive Parnassus Heights Plan

The goal of this planning process is to better support our UCSF researchers, clinicians, students, and staff, and better serve and welcome patients, families and community members. The Comprehensive Parnassus Heights Plan provides a roadmap for development that supports flexible growth with newly constructed and renovated buildings and welcoming public open spaces.

The Plan will benefit and enhance the community by making the campus:

  • easier to navigate with improved way-finding and a more attractive and welcoming design
  • an asset to the neighborhood with three times as much open space including a new east-west promenade, an improved “campus heart” with an expanded Saunders Court, better trail connections between Mount Sutro and Golden Gate Park, and terraces and pocket parks that welcome the community onto our campus
  • compact with flexible and sustainable growth within the campus’ existing footprint
  • a welcoming environment that takes full advantage of the location of Parnassus Heights, providing access to natural landscapes, light and an extended public realm with a variety of indoor and outdoor gathering places
  • safer and more pedestrian-friendly with improvements to the Parnassus Avenue streetscape, a utility corridor in the back of campus to improve loading and deliveries, a proposed pedestrian bridge across Parnassus, and other pedestrian safety and circulation improvements
  • more sustainable with commitment to sustainability in building design to help UCSF meet its aggressive carbon-reduction goals
  • a continuing vital part of the city’s healthcare network with a modern hospital serving the community with an emergency department and advanced patient care
  • a provider of more than 1,000 below-market housing units to contribute to the jobs-housing balance in the city and benefit the community’s local businesses

Want to read the final, 180-page plan? Please sign up for our community listserv so we can alert you once the plan is released in late September.

Current Planning Process

This current phase of the planning process will guide priorities and decisions about how development is implemented over the next 30 years. This will include working with internal and external stakeholders to determine the scope, programming and financial feasibility of near-term projects.

Four specific projects were identified to be implemented in the next ten years. These include: 

  • Research and Academic Building: We are currently conducting a validation study to inform the redevelopment of the UC Hall site to for research and academic uses
  • Construction of the UCSF Helen Diller Medical Center: We are in the early phases of planning our new hospital on the Langley Porter site that we anticipate will open its doors in 2029
  • Increased Aldea Housing: Redevelop older apartment buildings in the Aldea family housing complex with taller buildings to accommodate more students.
  • New Irving Street arrival: Renovate the Irving Street arrival to improve campus image, wayfinding and overall experience for everyone.
Community Advisory Committee

UCSF has convened an Advisory Committee for the Future of UCSF Parnassus Heights, comprised of community stakeholders, leaders, neighbors, merchants and representatives from city agencies and non-profits. This group will be a constant thread between UCSF and the community throughout the planning process and advise UCSF on potential neighborhood issues as we delve into the concepts developed in the CPHP and assess how to make them a reality. Click here for a list of the Advisory Committee members. 

Meetings are open to the public and will be held at Millberry Union, 500 Parnassus Ave., starting at 7 p.m. Meeting materials from past meetings can be found in the links below each meeting date. Activities for children available upon request. Please join us!

UCSF will also host at least one community open house event to ensure the broader community is informed and all voices have an opportunity to be heard. The community open house events are tentatively scheduled for December 2019 and April 2020.

Previous Planning & Community Process

The goal of the Parnassus Heights Re-Envisioning Process was to evaluate improvements to the campus and develop a holistic renovation plan to enable our historic campus to better support our doctors, staff, students, patients, and neighbors. The process began in fall of 2018 and concluded in summer of 2019.

The result of this planning process was the development of the Comprehensive Parnassus Heights Plan (CPHP), including the Community Ideas Report that includes community feedback related to housing, campus design, open space, transportation, and public realm improvements.

Community Engagement

UCSF engaged with our community through a community working group that held seven meetings to advise the UCSF planning team on neighborhood perspectives as the plan was developed. We also hosted three open house events for the community and launched a neighborhood survey. We heard from more than 1,100 people about their priorities for campus improvements.

Throughout the development of the plan, our neighbors gave feedback and helped us identify potential improvements that would further neighborhood goals and better integrate the campus with the surrounding neighborhood. We thank our neighbors for sharing your time and your ideas to help us improve the campus to benefit everyone in our community.

Community Working Group

UCSF convened a 21-member working group comprised of community leaders, neighbors, merchants and city representatives. For a full list of working group members, click here.

This group was a constant thread between UCSF and the community throughout our planning process. They were key to advising us on neighborhood issues and opportunities, community planning and design principles, strategies and actions for addressing community concerns and helping UCSF be a good neighbor.

Working group meetings were held between October 2018 and May 2019. View the Parnassus Heights Community Working Group meeting information, including the presentation, handouts, and meeting notes here:

Community Open Houses

UCSF also hosted three community open house events to engage the community at large. The information provided at the open house event, including the agenda, presentation, and handouts can be found here:

Community Survey

A community survey was conducted in August 2018 to seek neighborhood feedback on potential improvements that would further neighborhood goals for the areas surrounding the Parnassus Heights campus. We received 1,139 responses to the survey. A summary of the survey results can be found in the October 1,2018 Presentation presentation.


For more information about Parnassus Heights Re-Envisioning Process, please contact Lily Wong.

Lily Wong
Assistant Director, Community Relations
Strategic Communications & University Relations

University of California, San Francisco
3333 California Street, Suite 103, Box 0462 | San Francisco, CA 94118
tel: 415.476.8318 | mobile: 415.650.7443
[email protected]

Community & Government Relations Projects

UCSF is engaged in a variety of ongoing projects designed to enhance the campus and medical center, and better serve both patients and the greater community. When we embark on any project, planning always includes engagement with the local community.