Board of Regents Approves UCSF Center in Dogpatch

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Last month, the University of California Board of Regents Finance and Capital Strategies Committee unanimously approved UC San Francisco’s proposed Child, Teen and Family Center, to be located at 2130 Third Street.  The decision followed an endorsement by the Board of Regents Health Services Committee in April. The Board of Regents approval encompassed certification of the project’s environmental impact report and its design, which was found to comply with UC’s Sustainability Practices Policy targets.

“The programs occupying the building will bring together clinicians and researchers from multiple disciplines to address the most important problems in psychiatry, psychology, and related developmental fields; with a focus on prevention, community outreach, integration of pediatric and adult medicine with psychiatric care, and the development of cutting edge and improved treatments,” said Sam Hawgood, UCSF Chancellor.

“The project team has worked hard to be responsive to neighbor comments, and we’ve received a lot of positive feedback on the current design,” commented Christine Gasparac, UCSF director of community relations in April. “UCSF and the project team have been listening to and working with neighbors while the project team is in the design development process. The project team met with members of the DNA-Potrero Boosters Design and Development Committee twice in the past two months to work together to refine the building design.”

Developers SKS Partners, LLC and Prado Group are collaborating with Pfau Long Architecture and ZGF Architects on the project. Hathaway Dinwiddie Construction Company is the builder. The Center encompasses 170,000 gross square feet within a building varying from three to five stories, featuring outpatient clinics, research space, educational rooms, offices, a 200 to 250 seat auditorium and retail. No inpatient care will be provided at the Center. More than 500 faculty and staff members, as well as 260 patients and visitors, are expected to occupy the Center daily. Onsite parking will cater to patients; faculty and staff will park on the Mission Bay Campus.

One of the development team’s goals is to match the structure’s design with the surrounding neighborhood. However, Dogpatch residents remain displeased with the project, viewing it as out of character with the community.

“The campus seeks to reduce the impact of UCSF development on the Dogpatch neighborhood by complying with three separate City height limits that apply so the site: 45, 58 and 68 feet,” explained Hawgood. “As a result, the building height ranges from three to five stories and allows the design to respond to the varied scales of the site’s context. The exterior materials will be a combination of metal panels and glazing, which are intended to provide a rich texture and develop a patina with time, consistent with the neighborhood.”

In 2015, the Lisa and John Pritzker Family Fund gifted UCSF $50 million to promote mental health services, a portion of which was used to fund development of the Child, Teen and Family Center. “This visionary gift, in addition to enabling us to offer state-of-the-art mental health care, will leverage UCSF’s preeminent basic and clinical research programs in pediatrics and adolescent medicine to benefit the mental health of children and families,” said Hawgood in a press release. “This gift will advance the field.”

So far, $300 million has been garnered by donor gifts to pay for the financing and construction of the project. Although the funds aren’t enough to fully cover the annual lease payments for the property, Hawgood expressed confidence that active fundraising efforts to secure additional philanthropy will cover all costs without impacting UCSF finances.

UCSF’s guiding principles suggest that the Center should be designed so as to be timeless, adaptable for future services, with strong circulation, encouragement of inter-campus collaboration and connectivity, and a welcoming architectural character.

The building features sustainability measures aimed at securing Leadership in Energy & Environmental Design Gold certification, including high efficiency heating ventilation and air conditioning, energy systems that analyze efficiency performance, native species landscaping, rainwater reuse, and high efficiency plumbing. The design aims to maximize natural sunlight within the structure, outdoor air flow and landscaped areas both indoor and outdoor to foster health and wellbeing among occupants and visitors.

A phased construction period is expected to begin in late 2017 and extend to early 2020. Full building occupancy is planned for spring 2020. UCSF representatives asserted that once construction is underway safety will be a high priority; workers will strive to keep noise and pollution to a minimum, with a goal to recycle at least 75 percent of construction waste. Neighbors will be notified about construction activity, road and sidewalk closures and impacts to nearby transit routes.