Presidio of San Francisco (October 15, 2012) -- A pioneering approach to the seismic strengthening of historic buildings has earned the Presidio Trust a prestigious Preservation Design Award from the California Preservation Foundation (CPF). The Trust and its partner, Holmes-Culley Associates, were honored in the Craftsmanship/Preservation Technology category at the CPF’s 29TH annual awards ceremony Saturday in Los Angeles. They were among 17 winners chosen from among 75 nominees in eight categories statewide.
It is the fourth consecutive year the Trust has earned a Preservation Design Award.
“It is extremely gratifying that the Trust continues to be recognized by the California Preservation Foundation for our work in historic preservation,” says Craig Middleton, the Trust’s executive director. “This award is a great honor and reflects the Trust’s high standards and deep commitment to preserving the Presidio’s historic structures for the public by employing innovative approaches to design and engineering.”
The Trust was honored for its groundbreaking approach in applying state-of-the-art technology to the historic rehabilitation of two of the Presidio’s iconic Montgomery Street Barracks. To strengthen the unreinforced brick buildings, the Trust employed a process known as “fiber wrapping,” in which fiber reinforced polymers were used to strengthen the buildings’ walls. It’s a technique that uses a lighter touch and better maintains the buildings’ historic character than more traditional methods. As a result, the Trust was able to preserve the buildings’ stately facades and other historic details, while leaving no visible trace of the structural repairs. Since the seismic upgrade is almost completely hidden from view, the Trust added a “discovery window” to showcase its unusual solution. Visitors can look behind a tiny door on the wall adjacent to the reception desk in building 103 to see a small part of the carbon fiber installation.
Built in 1895, the majestic Montgomery Street Barracks are among the Presidio’s signature structures. Known colloquially as “infantry row,” they line the historic Main Parade Ground and once housed hundreds of soldiers en route to conflicts from the Spanish-American War and the conquest of the Philippines to Vietnam. Today, five of seven barracks have been completely rehabilitated and are home to Futures Without Violence (Building 100), the Walt Disney Family Museum (Building 104), the Presidio Trust headquarters (103), and office space (Buildings 101 and 106).
The Trust and its partners in historic rehabilitation have now won a total of eight Preservation Design Awards since 2000. Past winners include:
- 2012 Cultural Resource Study Award—for the Officers’ Club Adobe Non-Destructive Evaluation Report
- 2012 Preservation Award—for the transformation of the former Public Health Service hospital into the Presidio Landmark residential apartments
- 2010 Cultural Resource Study Award—for the Cultural Landscape of the Presidio’s Fort Scott
- 2009 Rehabilitation (Large Category) Award—for the rehabilitation of a former army airplane hangar for La Petite Baleen, a children’s swim school
- 2009 Craftsman/Preservation Technology Award—for the restoration of the Presidio’s historic Arguello Gate
- 2006 Rehabilitation Award—for the rehabilitation of an historic warehouse for Senspa, a stunning day spa
- 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 is a unique federal agency created to save and transform the Presidio of San Francisco, an historic American place steeped in service. The Trust was established by the United States Congress in 1996 to administer the Presidio, a former Army base and new urban national park site located at the base of the Golden Gate Bridge. Today, 3,000 people live in the park’s former military housing, and more than 200 organizations have located in Presidio buildings, attracted by the Presidio’s beauty and historic significance. Under the Trust’s management, the Presidio has been transformed into a stunning visitor destination with an extensive system of trails and scenic overlooks; rehabilitated historic buildings; programs that teach about the Presidio’s military history and natural resources, and tenants and residents who help to sustain the park. To learn more about the Trust visit: www.presidio.gov/about.