San Francisco Art Institute - Fort Mason Center Pier 2
Architect: Leddy Maytum Stacy Architects
Owner: San Francisco Art Institute/Fort Mason Center for Arts and Culture
Location: San Francisco
Project site: Historic structure or district
Building program type(s): Education – College/University (campus-level)
Located at the edge of San Francisco Bay, an historic U.S. Army warehouse at Fort Mason has been transformed into a new campus for the San Francisco Art Institute (SFAI), creating a dynamic new hub for expanded arts education and public engagement. This historic adaptive reuse preserves the industrial integrity of the landmark structure, supports the school’s pedagogical goals, and integrates advanced sustainable building systems. The project integrates student studios, public exhibition galleries, flexible teaching spaces, a black box theater, and a workshop/maker space, while supporting SFAI’s commitment to positioning artists at the center of public life.
"The design team recognized the assets of the existing structure and created a great, low-energy building with a healthy interior environment." ~ Jury Statement
Located at the edge of San Francisco Bay, the historic U.S. Army warehouse Pier 2 at Fort Mason has been transformed into a new campus for San Francisco Art Institute (SFAI) creating a dynamic new hub for arts education and public engagement. The adaptive rehabilitation of the pier shed preserves the industrial integrity of the landmark structure, integrates advanced sustainable strategies, reuses existing building resources, supports SFAI’s pedagogical and environmental goals, and forges new community connections. San Francisco Art Institute is “dedicated to the intrinsic value of art and its vital role in shaping and enriching society and the individual.” In support of this mission SFAI has created an arts campus at the heart of the vibrant Fort Mason Center for Arts & Culture (FMCAC) in an urban National Park. The design interweaves historic and contemporary, leveraging the dramatic light filled industrial structure to create 160 studios, workshop, media theater, flexible teaching spaces, and public exhibition galleries. The rehabilitation of the 1909 concrete and steel structure capitalizes not only on the embodied energy of the existing building materials but also on the embodied cultural history. A unique public/private partnership was formed between SFAI, FMCAC, and the National Park Service (NPS) to create the new arts center in the Golden Gate National Parks. The collaborative process was supported by a complex funding program which enabled the evolution of Pier 2 from a military processing point for soldiers and supplies during four wars into an interdisciplinary art campus and community cultural center. The project promotes not only the social/cultural value of the triple bottom line but also the economic and environmental values by integrating cost effective sustainable systems, including a new high efficiency radiant slab, a rooftop PV solar system providing 100 percent of electricity required, and by maximizing the intrinsic daylight throughout.