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SF Jazz / Mark Cavagnero Associates

© Tim Griffith
© Tim Griffith

© Tim Griffith © Tim Griffith © Tim Griffith © Tim Griffith

Facades+ Performance Workshop

Presented by The Architect's Newspaper and enclos, Mode Lab recently announced their upcoming Facades+ Performance Symposium in San Francisco taking place July11-12. The event consists of hands-on instruction by industry experts in a small, one-on-one, classroom setting. These workshops will provide professionals and academics with the skills and knowledge to work with cutting edge technologies in a fast-paced and intensive environment. The workshop will explore the use of Grasshopper, Firefly and Arduino as creative and technical tools in the design, simulation and prototyping of intelligent building skins. For more information, please visit here.

What Does the New Apple Store in San Francisco Say About Commercial Architecture?

This past May, Apple filed plans to close its existing flagship retail store at 1 Stockton Street in San Francisco and move it three blocks north to one of the city's most popular spots: Union Square. This plan was met with enthusiasm from city officials until they realized that Apple and the store's architects at Foster + Partners were disregarding a beloved bronze folk art fountain by San Francisco sculptor Ruth Asawa that currently occupies the site. Many have also criticized the store's design for being a characterless box of metal and glass that contributes nothing unique to the local landscape, raising awareness of a commercial architecture defined more and more by trademark and less and less by its surroundings.

More on Apple's proposal in San Francisco and the problems of trademarked design after the break.

Architecture at Zero 2013 Competition

Open to students and professionals worldwide, the Architecture at Zero 2013 competition is challenging participants to create a design for a new, roughly 150 unit mixed-use residential apartment building located in the Tenderloin neighborhood in San Francisco, California. With the aim of being as close to zero net energy as possible, the building must be a mix of affordable and market rate housing units and include a full neighborhood-serving grocery store on the ground level. The competition is presented by Pacific Gas and Electric Company (PG&E) and AIA San Francisco, in partnership with the Tenderloin Neighborhood Development Corporation (TNDC). Submissions are due October 1. To register, and for more information, please visit here.

The Presidio Trust of San Francisco Announces 3 Finalists for Cultural Hub Competition

San Francisco is planning a new cultural facility on the former commissary of the military base that has been turned into a national park and has announced three finalists in its competition held by the Presidio Trust, according to news outlet SFGate.  The 92,000 square-foot building is part of the Golden Gate National Recreation Area and has an ambitious future that will be developed on this unique location.  The three finalists have diverse agendas that range from turning the future cultural center into a performance and exhibition space to an institute that focuses on sustainability issues.  The Presidio Trust is currently laying out guidelines in the next step of the competition that will likely be due in the fall.  The trust also plans to engage the public with a to-be-scheduled forum in June that will host presentations by the finalists.

Join us after the break for a look at the three finalists.

Transbay Transit Center in San Francisco / Pelli Clarke Pelli Architects

The revamped Transbay Transit Center in downtown San Francisco broke ground earlier this week, a project that will introduce a 1.5 million square foot development that will be part transportation hub, part public park and urban space, and part offices and retail establishments.  The massive undertaking, designed by renowned architecture firm Pelli Clarke Pelli will bring together 11 systems of local and national transportation, serving 45 million people per year.  In addition to securing access to myriad transit lines, the project will also provide downtown San Francisco with a 5.4-acre rooftop park, designed by PWP Landscape Architecture, along with numerous cultural programs.  The project is budgeted at 4.2 billion dollars and is projected for completion in 2017.  It is funded in part by the construction of a 1,070-foot tower that is adjacent to the Transbay Transity Center.  It is also designed by Pelli Clarke Pelli and is slated to be the tallest tower in San Francisco.  The tower will secure 60 stories of office space and jobs and will contribute to the projected $87 billion of revenue through 2030.

Join us after the break for more details on this project.

A Conversation on Firm Culture with Carole Wedge and Jessica Lane

As part of AIA San Francisco's continuous effort to highlight women in architecture and better understand the imbalance of gender in the profession, they are hosting two great women for a conversation on firm culture, leadership and mentorship which will take place March 19th from 6:00pm-8:00pm PST. Carole Wedge, FAIA - Shepley Bulfinch's first female President in its 130 year history- will talk with emerging designer Jessica Lane of EHDD to discuss Carole's start at Shepley Bulfinch, in 1986, working in the mailroom as a co-op architecture student at the Boston Architectural Center, as well as her appointment, in 2004, as president. For more information, please visit here.

AD Classics: Marin Civic Center / Frank Lloyd Wright

The Marin County Civic Center was Frank Lloyd Wright's last commission and largest public project, including several civic functions that would serve Marin County and San Francisco, which after the opening of the Golden Gate Bridge became closer than ever. Wright was selected for the project in 1957, winning a vote out of hope he would be able to best represent a democratic government open to the people through the Civic Center.

© Flickr User C.M. Keiner © Flickr User C.M. Keiner © Flickr User DB's travels © Flickr User DB's travels

Video: Bridge of Light

The NY Times published this amazing video of a spectacular art installation on the Oakland-San Francisco Bay Bridge. Thousands of computer controlled LED lights can be seen during the night with this fantastic display. Enjoy!

Ray and Dagmar Dolby Regeneration Medicine Building / Rafael Viñoly Architects

  • Architects: Rafael Viñoly Architects
  • Location: 505 Parnassus Avenue, University of California San Francisco Medical Center : Dentistry, San Francisco, CA 94131, USA
  • Architect in Charge: Rafael Viñoly
  • Electrical Engineer : Cupertino Electric, Inc
  • Landscape Architect : Carducci & Associates, Inc
  • Civil Engineer: Sandis
 Cahd Browning
  • Structural Engineer (Design): Nabih Youssef Associates Michael Gemmill
  • Structural Engineer (of Record): Forell/Elsesser Engineers, Inc
  • Area: 6364.0 sqm
  • Project Year: 2010
  • Photographs: Bruce Damonte

© Bruce Damonte © Bruce Damonte © Bruce Damonte © Bruce Damonte

College Track / Turnbull Griffin Haesloop Architects

© David Wakely © David Wakely © David Wakely © David Wakely

Aesop Store in Fillmore Street / NADAAA

  • Architects: NADAAA
  • Location: 2450 Fillmore Street, San Francisco, CA 94115, USA
  • Principal in Charge: Dan Gallagher
  • Design Principals: Nader Tehrani, Katherine Faulkner
  • Project Manager: John Chow
  • Team: Jonathan Palazzolo, Parke MacDowell
  • Project Year: 2012
  • Photography: Juliana Sohn

© Juliana Sohn © Juliana Sohn © Juliana Sohn © Juliana Sohn

Update: SFMOMA Expansion / Snøhetta

The San Francisco Museum of Modern Art (SFMOMA) has announced further details of its 235,000-square-foot building expansion that will support the museum's increasing role in city life and the international art community. Designed by Norway-based practice Snøhetta, in collaboration with local firm EHDDthe 10-story concrete structure will compliment SFMOMA's original, Mario Botta-designed, red-brick museum by offering more free-to-the-public space, expanded education programs and an abundance of flexible performance-based gallery space.

Our Ideal City? Seen through the eyes of the Pacific West Coast.

View of Silicon Valley via Flickr user Shootyoureyeout
View of Silicon Valley via Flickr user Shootyoureyeout

As most New Yorkers know, people are willing to shell out a hefty sum to live in a place where work and play are right around the corner from each other.  But as the article by Ken Layne in The Awl  points out, the west coast is a somewhat different place.  UNLIKE New York City, which is crowded with restaurants, bars, and entertainment, as well as offices, design firms and businesses; Silicon Valley, which caters to programmers and tech companies that hire at $100k a year, offers few of the amenities that a nearby town like San Francisco does.  So, Layne concludes, residents are willing to spend hours of their day  making their way into the fortressed office parks of Silicon Valley, flanked by parking lots and boulevards, just to have a cultural reprieve to call home.  

Flip House / Fougeron Architecture

  • Architects: Fougeron Architecture
  • Location: San Francisco, CA, USA
  • Project Year: 2012
  • Photographs: Courtesy of Fougeron Architecture

Courtesy of Fougeron Architecture Courtesy of Fougeron Architecture Courtesy of Fougeron Architecture Courtesy of Fougeron Architecture

Fillmore Park / David Baker + Partners Architects

  • Architects: David Baker + Partners Architects
  • Location: 1345 Turk Street, San Francisco, United States
  • Design Team: David Baker, Peter MacKenzie, Ian Dunn
  • Site Area: 26,708 sqf
  • Client: Michael Simmons Property Development
  • Area: 44,330 ft2
  • Project Year: 2012
  • Photographs: Bruce Damonte

© Bruce Damonte © Bruce Damonte © Bruce Damonte © Bruce Damonte

Golden State Warriors Stadium / Snøhetta + AECOM


The Golden State Warriors recently announced that Snøhetta and AECOM have been selected as the architecture team to design the Warriors’ new sports and entertainment complex on the San Francisco waterfront. Currently in the final stages of the agreement, the new stadium will be a true centerpiece in hosting the Bay Area’s NBA basketball team, as well as provide a great venue concerts, cultural events and conventions, which are all prominent events the city currently cannot accommodate. More images of the architects’ design can be viewed after the break.