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SF Historic: Renovation of a historic Italian Renaissance style home in San Francisco, California by Walker Warner Architects

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Project name: SF Historic
Architecture firm: Walker Warner Architects
Location: San Francisco, California, USA
Photography: Matthew Millman
Principal architect: Brooks Walker
Design team: Senior Project Manager: Brian Lang. Architectural Staff: Matthew Marsten, Hana Bittner
Interior design: Redmond Aldrich Design
Built area:
Site area:
Design year: 1920
Completion year: 2019
Civil engineer:
Structural engineer:
Environmental & MEP:
Landscape: Scott Lewis Landscape Architecture
Tools used:
Construction: Matarozzi Pelsinger Builders
Budget: Undisclosed
Client: Private
Status: Completed
Typology: Residential › House
Originally built in the 1920s, the renovation of this historic Italian Renaissance style home was a delicate balance between preserving its historical character while leaning forward to respond to a more contemporary way of living. To bring the building up to earthquake code, the home had to be taken down to the studs and the foundation reinforced with steel.

With San Francisco having strict historic preservation regulations, it was essential to preserve the look and feel of the public facades of the building. Decorative wooden cornices and columns were replaced with custom fiberglass reproductions, recreating the original architectural details. With the addition, we were able to introduce a modern two-story geometric volume that floods the new spaces with natural light and connects to the vibrant garden with the century old Copper Beach tree as a front and center focal point. "We ended up drawing inspiration from the historic London townhomes where you see the modernist interventions in contrast to the historic architecture, and it’s clear what's what,” notes Brooks Walker, Principal, Walker Warner Architects.

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