How do you create a modern building in a tight downtown San Francisco site within a tight construction budget?
How do you create a modern building in a tight downtown San Francisco site within a tight construction budget?

San Francisco Planning + Urban Research (SPUR) Urban Center

The 4-story, 14,000 s.f. office building was designed for SPUR, a non-profit group specializing in research, analysis, public education, and advocacy to promote good planning and good government in San Francisco. The project includes an exhibit space on the ground floor, a 125-seat multi-purpose assembly hall, office and meeting spaces.

Customized Solution
  • To meet the tight construction budget, Forell/Elsesser performed schematic design of four structural options: heavy timber, structural steel, reinforced concrete, and reinforced masonry. Ultimately, the steel framing with masonry wall option was selected as the least construction cost and best value alternative.
  • Much of the framing and structural elements remain exposed for a clean architectural look. The project includes several sustainable features throughout the design such as natural light, recycled building materials and operable windows.
  • Forell/Elsesser donated a portion of the structural engineering design fee towards the project to assist with the non-profit’s ability to meet its limited budget.
CATEGORIES

Justice/Civic/Governmental


HIGHLIGHTS
  • Architect: Pfau Long Architecture
  • Owner: San Francisco Planning & Research Association
  • Steel-framed with CMU walls in one direction and braced frames in the other
  • Four structural schemes were considered during design to determine the best value alternative.