Design Principles for Civic Center’s Future Public Spaces
1 An accessible place for everyone that embodies civic principles
- Create inviting spaces serving a diverse range of visitors, including very low-income people who rely on the public spaces.
- Include interactive program and elements that transcend cultural difference.
- Celebrate the diversity of San Francisco as a global city.
2 Authentic to San Francisco & represents the best of surrounding neighborhoods
- Provide opportunities and space for expression, performance, public art.
- Support and augment the Farmers’ Market, local jobs and commerce.
- Support small businesses in non-competitive way: incubate.
3 A place of respite and a place to meet your neighbors
- Provide basic amenities: a place that’s pleasant to be in and linger.
- Provide access to nature
- Provide access to beauty: color, plants, flowers
4 Financially sustainable and managed to be clean, safe, and inviting
- Support the public spaces with a public health agenda that prioritizes wellness, and healthy uses.
- Sustained ambassadors program to help make people feel comfortable and discourage anti-social behavior.
- Establish consistent points and approach to safety and enforcement issues.
5 A model for sustainable and resilient urban infrastructure and “the safest place in the city”
- Make a comfortable and welcoming environment day and night.
- Incorporate best practices in infrastructure, design and services.
- Ensure Civic Center is an accessible resource in the heart of the city after an emergency event.
6 World class, elegant and beautiful
- Create a contemporary landmark that celebrates Civic Center’s history.
- Give people something to look forward to going to.
- Make a destination people are proud of and want to show visitors.
- Embody the best of San Francisco to the rest of the world.
Frameworks: Considerations and Trade-offs
The preferred plan will address all of the considerations below to some extent.
GATHERING: Each framework plan is developed with specific considerations and trade-offs that inform the organization of the three public spaces for spontaneous and planned events and gathering:
FLEXIBLE AREA FOR LARGE EVENTS AND GATHERING is essential for a successful Civic Center. Each framework plan provides a different amount of flexible-use lawn & plaza versus fixed elements & planting:
TREES AND PLANTING provide important nature in the city, relief from the surrounding streets, shelter, and wind mitigation -- but reduce the amount of flexible area. Each framework plan provides a different amount of trees & planting:
INTERACTIVE FEATURES such as fountains, public art and spaces for performances add beauty, amusement and reason to visit. Each framework plan provides different interactive features and opportunities:
DAILY USE: Each framework plan is developed with specific considerations and trade-offs that support varied and inclusive uses, activities and social life:
SUPPORTING EVERYDAY USES in the public realm, and activity associated with surrounding institutions & Brooks Hall, is a goal of each framework plan. Each framework promotes and accommodates a different variety of activities:
RECREATION: Civic Center is public open space serving active recreation needs (informal sports areas, lawns, etc.) of surrounding neighborhood residents and district employees. Each framework plan proposes different recreational amenities, including lawn areas of varying size:
KIOSKS AND PAVILIONS can create centers of activity where people can eat, shop, or receive services. These are social experiences that are important for a lively Civic Center. Each framework plan proposes a different amount and arrangement of uses in kiosks, pavilions, and Brooks Hall: