San Francisco / Hellmuth, Obata + Kassabaum
To enliven San Francisco’s Mid-Market District, a neighborhood with one of the highest crime rates and lowest occupancy rates in the city, architecture firm HOK initiated a charrette, teaming up with the Central Market Community Benefit District and drawing dozens of firms including Public Architecture and WSP Flack + Kurtz, as well as local residents. From these sessions emerged a proposal for simple adaptive reuse—converting disused newspaper kiosks into community-focused hubs and sites for micro-businesses. Proposed new uses include a free bicycle repair station, a florist, a café, and a venue for performance art. The city agreed to lease the kiosks free of charge for the community uses. The bike station opened several months ago, and the florist will open next.
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