Nob Hill’s Masonic Auditorium received approval to expand it’s live music offerings after the San Francisco Planning Commission approved a settlement agreement between building owners, concert promoter Live Nation and neighbors.
Nearby residents of 1111 California Street have opposed plans for expansion at the venue for years. A recently approved settlement agreement permits a renovation to the interior, which will expand total capacity from 3,166 to 3,300 people by removing the facility’s main floor seating. Owners had originally requested a capacity increase to 3,500 people, but were denied. Renovations to the stage, construction of a commercial kitchen and up to five new permanent food and alcohol concession stations will also be added.
To ease local concerns, Live Nation and the Masons will pay $100,000 per year to the Huntington Park preservation fund for the next three years, $30,000 annually afterward, and $0.50 cents per ticket sold. The number of large events (more than 250 people) each year is capped at 79 and only 54 can be concerts. Alcohol sales stop one hour before the conclusion of an event, weeknight events cannot end later than 11 pm and 11:30 pm on weekends. The promoter can request an extension until 1 am for three events annually.
The Masonic Auditorium was built in 1958 and has hosted occasional concerts, corporate events and smaller conventions for decades. It still houses administrative offices for the Masons of California Grand Lodge, along with the Masonic library and museum.