SAN FRANCISCO (CBS SF) — San Francisco’s Academy of Art University is getting renewed attention from city officials for allegedly skirting city planning and permit laws. The city has been at odds with the for-profit school over its real estate practices for many years.
San Francisco Supervisor Aaron Peskin, who presided over a hearing on student housing during the Board of Supervisors’ Government Audit and Oversight Committee Thursday, is calling on officials at the San Francisco Planning Department to crack down on the college.READ MORE: Cal Fire Units Respond to Wildland Fire Close to Santa Cruz County Prescribed Burn
Peskin said via Twitter Friday, “This Academy of Real Estate scandal has been allowed to run amok for long enough.”
San Francisco City Attorney Dennis Herrera has also been urging the Planning Department to enforce the city’s land use laws. Herrera has also urged the Planning Department to issue penalties against Academy of Art University for outstanding violations at its buildings across the city.
Academy of Art University, a large for-profit art school with more than 18,000 students, has acquired dozens of buildings since it was established in 1929.READ MORE: AC Transit Bus Crashes Into West Oakland Home
Herrera said last year that many of the university’s buildings are in violation of the city’s building codes.
The city attorney has said that the lack of enforcement by the Planning Department “undermines and jeopardizes the city and county of San Francisco’s … enforcement efforts and suggests that AAU is above the law.”
A Planning Department memo to the Planning Commission in September 2015 stated that the university had 33 existing properties that have not obtained all the required city permits and/or entitlements, including building permits and conditional use authorizations, while the university continues to acquire new sites.MORE NEWS: UPDATE: Witness Claims Oakland Police Searching for Wrong Car in Road Rage Homicide
By Hannah Albarazi – Follow her on Twitter