Several regional agencies in San Francisco’s Bay Area now work together literally as well as figuratively. Renovation of an eight-story building that formerly housed Marine Corps and U.S. Postal Service functions has created a regional government headquarters in the city’s SOMA district.
The co-located agencies combine administrative offices and support services for the Bay Area Toll Authority, the Metropolitan Transportation Commission, the Bay Area Air Quality Management District and the Association of Bay Area Governments. Neighboring businesses benefit too, with space on the first floor available for small businesses to lease. Overall, agencies now collaborate more efficiently and effectively, lowering the cost of keeping the Bay Area bustling.
Harris provided construction management services to the Bay Area Headquarters Authority, a joint commission charged with handling the renovation and relocation. The project includes tenant coordination, interior construction and finishes for offices and conference spaces. Harris has also managed construction of a new fitness center, a new boardroom and an eight-story atrium, capped with a skylight and featuring suspended stairways.
The total project cost is $251 million, which includes:
- Seismic retrofitting
- Improvements to the exterior envelope to increase seismic tolerance and efficiency
- Level 8 exterior garden
- Removal of interior floor plates to open up atria for natural light
- Replacing and upgrading restrooms, elevators and mechanical and HVAC equipment
- Addition of accessibility features, including ADA-compliant ramp upgrades and proper access from the street level
- Construction of a large data center and integrated data network
The Authority plans to seek LEED Gold certification for the renovation.
Beyond the Blueprints
Renovating a building with existing tenants is always complicated—especially with so many high profile and vital agencies. Among others, the eight-story, reinforced-concrete structure houses a Drug Enforcement Administration laboratory on the top floor, loaded with equipment sensitive to vibrations, noise and dust.
To avoid workday interruptions before the project’s scheduled completion in early 2016, Harris works closely with the stakeholders on communication and scheduling. Daily “scripting” meetings ensure major activities like demolition don’t disrupt the daily flow of important government work.