A federal building shuttered since 2007 at The City’s Civic Center is on its way to becoming a functional office again for government workers, according to the U.S. General Services Administration.
By early 2014, the building known as 50 U.N. Plaza will get a $122 million facelift and serve as the main office for GSA’s Pacific Rim Region. The agency acts as the government’s landlord by securing office space for the federal workforce.
The City expressed interest in obtaining the building when the federal agency considered leasing it out, but no final proposal was put forward because city funding was not available to do required seismic upgrades, according to GSA spokeswoman Traci Madison. Updates to the 350,000-square-foot building are expected to earn it a LEED Gold certification from the U.S. Green Building Council.
Funding for the project came from the federal Recovery and Reinvestment Act. Built in 1936, the structure is included on the National Register of Historic Places and was designed by Arthur Brown Jr., who also devised plans for City Hall, the San Francisco Opera House and Coit Tower. It was not the site of the 1945 United Nations charter signing — that was the War Memorial Veterans Building at 401 Van Ness Ave.
The last major government tenant in the building was the U.S. Department of Health and Human Services, according to the GSA.