Architectural competition for the San Francisco Prize

Fifteen years after the Loma Prieta earthquake devastated parts of San Francisco, an amazing silver lining is emergent in the City’s Hayes Valley Neighborhood. The earthquake-damaged Central Freeway has been demolished. Left behind are 22 developable parcels, some of which line a brand-new landscaped European-style Boulevard that is currently being built to replace the freeway. In addition to providing the opportunity to build almost 1,000 new housing units and vibrant retail space in a densely populated historic neighbourhood, the project offers an opportunity to achieve excellence and innovation in urban infill design that will establish the Boulevard as a San Francisco landmark. This architectural design competition encompasses six irregular parcels that front the new Boulevard.

Sponsors of this competition include San Francisco Planning and Urban Research, the American Institute of Architects San Francisco Chapter, San Francisco Beautiful, the Mayor’s Office of Economic Development, the San Francisco Redevelopment Agency, California College of the Arts, San Francisco Museum of Modern Art, and neighborhood representatives.

Some of the parcels will be developed by the San Francisco Redevelopment Agency while others will be sold to private developers. The purpose of the competition is to generate creative housing ideas for those and other sites formerly occupied by the freeway. Winning designs will win cash awards and subsequently be exhibited and published. While construction of the winning designs is not guaranteed, the competition sponsors will encourage developers to team up with designers who submit entries that will bring architectural distinction to the Boulevard.

The jury is comprised of: David Alumbaugh, Department of City Planning; David Baker, David Baker & Associates; Teddy Cruz, Estudio Teddy Cruz; Julie Eizenburg, Konig Eizenburg; Rick Holliday, Holliday Development Corporation; John Loomis, San Francisco Prize; Enrique Norten, TEN Arquitectos; and Ed Ong, Redevelopment Agency.

The competition is open to architects, planners, urban designers, students, and collaborative teams. The submission deadline is June 1, 2005, and a fee of $100 USD is required for each entry. For more information, please contact Bill Liskamm, FAIA, Competition Advisor at