The Officers’ Club is undergoing a comprehensive historic rehabilitation that will return the beloved landmark to its former role as the social center of the Presidio.
Its original adobe (circa 1810) is being repaired and stabilized, an effort that has earned the Presidio Trust a 2011 Preservation Design Award from the California Preservation Foundation for its Non-Destructive Evaluation Report. The award, in the Cultural Resources Studies and Reports category, recognizes the Trust’s ground-breaking use of technology in preservation.
Using thermal imaging technology similar to that used by fire departments to find hot spots or people trapped in burning buildings, as well as impulse radar to confirm voids and cracks in the adobe walls, 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 working to repair the walls using more than 3,000 adobe bricks made in Arizona, using traditional methods, by renowned adobe expert Pat Taylor. Spanish settlers likely made the building’s original adobe bricks at nearby El Polín Spring and carted them to the site. Plans ultimately call for exposing more of the original adobe walls on the interior of the building to better interpret the building’s history and building technology.
Officers' Club Reopens Opens in 2014
“We’re recreating spaces that existed in the past, reconstructing things and returning them to their original uses.”
~ Christina Wallace, Presidio Trust project manager
Hardie Road Walkway
While the building’s historic character is being preserved, the rehabilitation will remove some non-historic elements—recreating public spaces that existed in the past and returning them to their original uses. A new walkway will provide a connection from the historic wing to the new courtyards and two-storey building behind.
Heritage Gallery and Events Venue
In 1972 architect Robert B. Wong designed a two-story, Mission style addition to the Officers’ Club with a grand ballroom and a second floor lounge. The second floor, long closed to the public, is being restored to host special events
. The room offers sweeping, panoramic views overlooking the Main Post and the bay, and is ringed by a view terrace that will be open to the public. The first floor, which since 2001 has housed an exhibition hall, will offer a gallery exploring the history of the Presidio as well as its ongoing evolution.
The rehabilitation includes the repair and restoration of all significant historic spaces including the Mesa, Moraga, DeAnza, Garden and Arguello rooms; the construction of new exhibit space and venues; rehabilitation of classrooms to support Presidio education programs as well as seismic upgrades; new building systems and improvements to enhance accessibility for people with disabilities.