Posts Tagged ‘Presidio of San Francisco’

San Francisco’s Presidio Once Again Wins Preservation Design Awards: Officer’s Club and Landmark Projects

Tuesday, October 4th, 2011

All the deets, below.

Via Presidio Trust

“PRESIDIO TAKES HOME TWO PRESTIGIOUS PRESERVATION DESIGN AWARDS
OFFICERS’ CLUB AND PRESIDIO LANDMARK PROJECTS HONORED

Presidio of San Francisco (October 4, 2011) — An innovative approach to historic preservation of the Presidio’s historic Officers’ Club has earned the Presidio Trust a Preservation Design award from the California Preservation Foundation (CPF). The award in the Culture Resources Studies and Reports category was one of two the Trust received at the CPF’s 28TH annual awards ceremony Saturday night. The rehabilitation of the Presidio Landmark was also honored in the Preservation category. These projects were among 27 winners in nine categories statewide.

It is the third consecutive year the Trust has earned a Preservation Design Award.

“It is a great honor to receive these awards from the California Preservation Foundation,” said Craig Middleton, the Trust’s executive director. “We take great pride in preserving the historic fabric and character of the Presidio and it is extremely gratifying when those efforts are recognized by an organization such as the CPF.”

The award for its Non-Destructive Evaluation Report, honors the Trust’s ground-breaking use of technology in preservation of the adobe walls inside the historic Officers’ Club. Using thermal imaging technology, similar to that used by fire departments to find hot spots or people in trapped in burning buildings, the Trust was able to map moisture levels and cavities inside the walls without having to drill into them or tear them down. Guided by these “maps” crews are now able to repair the walls using new adobe bricks.
“This is true preservation and conservation at its best and it’s exciting that the California Preservation Foundation has recognized that with their award,” says Christian Wallace a Project Manager for Planning and Historical Rehabilitation with the Trust.

The oldest and most loved building in the Presidio, and the oldest in San Francisco, the Officers’ Club is undergoing a complete rehabilitation that includes the repair and restoration of all significant historic spaces, the construction of new exhibit space and event venues, and seismic upgrades and improvements to enhance accessibility for people with disabilities. Work is scheduled to be completed late next year and the project is expected to receive a LEED gold certification from the U.S. Green Building Council.

While the award is a first for the rehabilitation of the Officers’ Club, it is the sixth award for the Presidio Landmark project since its completion in July, 2010 and comes on the heels of a Gold Level Building Design+Construction, Reconstruction Award. The Presidio Landmark awards recognize the Trust, and its partner, Forest City Development, for the rehabilitation of the former Public Health Service Hospital and its transformation into 154 residential apartments.

The Trust and its partners in historic rehabilitation have now won a total of seven Preservation Design Awards since 2000. Past winners include:

Ø 2010 Cultural Resource Study Award—for the Cultural Landscape of the Presidio’s Fort Scott
Ø 2009 Rehabilitation (Large Category) Award—for the rehabilitation of a former army airplane hangar for La Petite Baleen, a children’s swim school
Ø 2009 Craftsman/Preservation Technology Award—for the restoration of the Presidio’s historic Arguello Gate
Ø 2006 Rehabilitation Award—for the rehabilitation of an historic warehouse for Senspa, a stunning day spa
Ø 2000 Rehabilitation Award—for the rehabilitation of the Presidio Fire Station

Founded in 1977, the California Preservation Foundation is a non-profit organization dedicated to the preservation of California’s diverse cultural and architectural heritage. With over 1,500 members it is the leading voice for historic preservation in the state. Since 1984 the foundation’s highly competitive Preservation Design Awards program has honored exceptional historic preservation projects for excellence in design, construction, planning and technology.

The Presidio Trust was established by the United States Congress in 1996 to administer the Presidio of San Francisco, an urban national park site located at the base of the Golden Gate Bridge. The Presidio is one of the largest and most ambitious historic preservation projects underway in the United States. The Presidio’s historic buildings represent the nation’s most comprehensive collection of military architecture, dating from the Civil War through the Cold War, including homes and barracks that reflect how the military social hierarchy and domestic life evolved in the Presidio. Since 1994, approximately 75 percent of the park’s historic structures have been rehabilitated for new uses. The Trust has won numerous awards for planning and historic preservation.”

Our Presidio Trust is Daylighting San Francisco’s Dragonfly Creek – Here’s What It Looks Like

Thursday, September 22nd, 2011

So, first it was all like this:

 

Click to expand

But now it’s all like this:

All the deets:

“PRESIDIO CREEKS SPRING BACK TO LIFE – RESTORATION OF DRAGONFLY CREEK NEXT STEP IN UNCOVERING PARK’S HIDDEN WATERWAYS

Presidio of San Francisco (September 21, 2011) — As the height of dry season arrives in San Francisco, the work to restore and expand the wetlands at Dragonfly Creek begins again this week in the Presidio. This effort provides an exciting opportunity to improve the parkland for both wildlife and visitors.

This is just one of a number of restoration projects in the Presidio and across the Bay Area intended to bring long buried or obscured waterways back to the surface, a process described as “daylighting,” which consists of excavating fill, removing buried culverts, and contouring the soil to create more natural, above-ground stream channels.

The many environmental and community benefits of these revitalization projects are currently visible in the Presidio, where Dragonfly Creek is one of several waterways that will be daylighted over the next couple of years.

“We have a unique opportunity in the Presidio to restore this creek to a more natural state,” says Mark Frey, an ecologist with the Presidio Trust. “Dragonfly Creek supports a remarkable diversity of native plants and animals.”

Revitalization of the creek, located in the historic Fort Scott district near the Presidio Native Plant Nursery, began several years ago with removal of eucalyptus trees and other non-native plants in favor of native wetland species. Now, as part of the environmental mitigation efforts associated with construction of the Presidio Parkway, the Trust is working with Caltrans to restore and expand the creek’s wetlands. Excavation and removal of Army-era fill will widen the floodplain, allowing the creek water to flow more freely and increase new wetland habitat. As a result, a small thicket of willows that grows along the creek and is teeming with birds will expand to four times its current size.

“We are pleased to have this opportunity to restore Dragonfly Creek,” says Craig Middleton, Executive Director of the Presidio Trust. “We thank Caltrans for its commitment to restoring the scenic beauty and natural character of this area as part of the Presidio Parkway project.”

The Presidio’s first daylighting project began six years ago in the area known as Thompson’s Reach, in the lower Tennessee Hollow watershed near Crissy Field. As part of that habitat restoration effort, the Trust removed some 77,000 tons of debris from the former Army landfill site, and a 400-foot section of creek was taken out of an underground pipe and brought to the surface. That winter volunteers planted 35,000 native plants of 100 different species in the area. The abundance of wildlife that has moved in— including birds, salamanders, spiders and rare butterflies—gives testament to the site’s success. A video highlighting the transformation at Thompson’s Reach can be seen at www.youtube.com/presidiosf#p/u/9/gPLmzJKtyRk

Daylighting’s history stretches back nearly four decades, but with public interest growing and community planners becoming more aware of the benefits, such projects have gained a new popularity in recent years. In addition to the efforts in the Presidio, three other projects are in the works in San Francisco and another in downtown Berkeley. Projects are also being planned or undertaken in cities as diverse as Reno, Nevada; Seattle; Portland, Oregon; Providence, Rhode Island and Zurich, Switzerland.

In addition to the work at Dragonfly Creek, the Trust is planning its most extensive and dramatic daylighting project at Quartermaster Reach, between Thompson’s Reach and the Crissy Field marsh, where the creek lies buried beneath a decaying parking lot. The plan re-unites this disjointed piece of habitat with the surrounding wetlands, transforming the lot into a large natural wetland full of native plants and animals. The creek will be unearthed and eucalyptus trees and other invasive species removed, creating a contiguous stretch of above ground stream flowing from Thompson’s Reach into Crissy Field marsh. Work is expected to begin as early as 2013.

Additional daylighting projects in the Tennessee Hollow watershed are set to begin in the next several years.

The Presidio Trust was established by the United States Congress in 1996 to administer the Presidio of San Francisco, an urban national park site located at the base of the Golden Gate Bridge. The areas overseen by the Trust include expansive open space and spectacular views, a 300-acre historic forest, and rare and endangered plants and wildlife. The park is home to 13 distinctive plant communities featuring 280 native plant species, 16 of which are rare or endangered. Thousands of hours of volunteer work have restored many acres of natural resource habitat. The Presidio Native Plant Nursery grows 60,000 plants each year to make this restoration possible. 21st-Century “green” practices are employed in all building and landscape rehabilitation efforts.”