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City Park at Transbay Transit Center

August 30, 2016


Construction of the massive new Transbay Transit Center is almost finished; the six-billion-dollar station is set for completion next year, and one of the premier features of the anticipated complex is City Park, a 5.4-acre, elevated rooftop park that will be one of the most fascinating and functional green spaces in the city. Following in the footsteps of celebrated elevated parks like Paris’s Promenade Plantée and New York’s High Line, City Park is set to bring some organic rooftop splendor to SOMA. Residents of the 181 Fremont luxury condos will have access to Transbay and City Park through a sky bridge, placing them only a few steps from one of the most vibrant transit epicenters on the West Coast and its stunning and dynamic rooftop park.

San Francisco takes pride in being known for its environmental conservation, and City Park project is no exception. The space actually pulls double duty: it will be a fully functioning public park as well as a green roof that can help insulate the interior of the station and provide shade for the ground beneath it. The roof will also help regulate and cool the local climate and improve overall air quality by absorbing heat and chemicals. According to the architects behind the design of Transbay, the entire structure’s energy usage is “projected to be up to 25 percent lower than the 2008 Title 24 Energy Efficiency Standards.”

At a quarter mile in length, the park will provide a wealth of spaces for relaxation, in addition to sections dedicated to culinary, entertainment, and family-friendly options. There will be children’s play areas, lush gardens, walking and jogging trails, and an amphitheater that will host concerts and performances.

Given its (literally) elevated status, and the abundance of scenery at hand, City Park is primed to be a popular running and walking destination. The public green spaces will be designated “active” and “quiet;” that way, if relaxing with a book is the goal, you’ll know the appropriate area for minimal disturbance. The children’s play areas will be highly interactive and will encourage exploration of nature. And nature will certainly be thoroughly represented: there will be myriad varieties of plants and floral species, as well as a diverse assortment of trees and vegetation scattered throughout the space—and a wetland marsh. The park will be accessible from ten different entry points and will include a restaurant, a cafe, and a huge space for bike storage. The 1,000-person, open-air amphitheater will anchor the western end of the park and will play a vital role in many of the park’s hosted events, from fairs to concerts, speeches, and performances.

The luxury condos at 181 Fremont—offering not just a beautiful building with dozens of amenities, but also direct access to the Transbay Transit Center and City Park—are set to make their mark on SOMA and all of San Francisco.