Skip to Content

Presidio's Green Neighborhood Wins Governor's Award

Revitalized 36-acre Public Health Service District honored for outstanding achievement



Presidio of San Francisco (November 16, 2011) — The Presidio Trust and its partners Forest City Enterprises and Perkins+Will architects have been awarded the Governor’s Historic Preservation Award by the California State Office of Historic Preservation for the revitalization of the Presidio’s 36-acre Colonial-revival Public Health Service District (PHSD). The award recognizes outstanding achievement in the field of historic preservation. It is the only award of its kind presented by the state of California.

“Our efforts to preserve the Presidio’s unique historic character are a source of great pride”, says Craig Middleton, the Trust’s executive director. “To be recognized with such a prestigious award is both a tremendous honor and extremely gratifying.”

The award is the latest in a series of awards honoring the Trust’s historic preservation efforts. Last month, the PHSD project was one of two Presidio projects to receive Preservation Design Awards from the California Preservation Foundation. In August the project received a gold level Building Design+Construction, Reconstruction Award. In all the PHSD project has been honored with three awards this year, and seven since its completion in July 2010.

“Congratulations on receiving this distinguished award in recognition of the Presidio’s exceptional historic preservation efforts on behalf of one of California’s cultural treasures, ” wrote State Historic Preservation Officer Milford Wayne Donaldson in the letter announcing the award.

Established more than a century ago, the Public Health Service District — where compassionate, free medical care was once given to merchant mariners from around the world — is now the Presidio’s first “green” mixed-use neighborhood with 172 housing units, office space, a pre-school, a printing press, trails, scenic overlooks, and 25 acres of open space and native habitat.

Among the 14 buildings on the site is the Presidio’s largest historic building, the former Public Health Service Hospital, which, after a meticulous rehabilitation by Forest City Enterprises, reopened last year as thePresidio Landmark apartments. Seven historic homes on nearby Wyman Avenue, which once housed physicians and their families, have also been carefully rehabilitated by the Presidio Trust. The district features drought resistant landscaping, a unique water recharge system that captures rainwater and reduces run-off, and streetlights that emit low levels of illumination so they do not block the sky’s natural light.

The district, tucked into a corner along the park’s southern edge, is the first Presidio neighborhood to receive the US Green Building Council’s Leadership in Energy and Environmental Design for Neighborhood Development (LEED-ND) certification and is the first LEED-ND certified neighborhood in the country that is also an historic landmark district.

Presented each year by the state Office of Historic Preservation (OHP) and California State Parks, the Governor’s Historic Preservation Awards recognize meaningful achievement in historic preservation throughout the state. Since 1986, more than 200 individuals, organizations, companies, and public agencies have been honored for their outstanding commitment to preserving California’s cultural and architectural heritage. The awards will be presented at a ceremony at Leland Stanford Mansion State Historic Park in Sacramento on Thursday, November 17 at 1 pm.

The Presidio Trust was established by the United States Congress in 1996 to oversee the Presidio of San Francisco, an urban national park site located at the base of the Golden Gate Bridge. The Presidio is one of the largest and most ambitious historic preservation projects underway in the United States. The Presidio’s historic buildings represent the nation’s most comprehensive collection of military architecture, dating from the Civil War through the Cold War, including homes and barracks that reflect how the military social hierarchy and domestic life evolved in the Presidio. The Trust has rehabilitated more than 300 of the 433 historic buildings under its care. The Trust has won numerous awards for planning, design, and historic preservation.

Media Contacts

Lisa Petrie

Presidio Trust

(415) 264-7787