55 Ninth Street rises on what was a vacant site adjacent to the new Twitter Headquarters in the Mid-Market Street re-development corridor in downtown San Francisco. The new 352,000 GSF structure houses 273 rental apartments on seventeen floors above two floors of below-grade parking. A generous, South-facing outdoor amenity deck, twenty feet above the street, serves as one of many social focus points for the residents, providing exterior kitchens and lounge spaces, table tennis, and a movie screen with ample seating in a lushly landscaped setting.
Developer Avalon Bay is positioning the architecture of the new building to appeal to the younger, tech-savvy generation of workers flooding the revitalized Civic Center area; finishes of exposed, boardformed concrete and ecologically sensitive and re-used materials and furnishings are given particular emphasis in the design throughout, from the lobby to the elevators to the interiors of the units themselves.
The expression of the exterior façade is intended to act as a bridge in scale, color and materiality between the project’s neighbors: a monolithic twenty-storey office building with dark ribbon windows to the North and a finely-detailed brick and terra cotta building from the 1920’s to the South. The building takes its color cues from each of these, and then gradually steps its scale from a large, finely-detailed glass cubist expression against the northern property down to an intricate, highly-textured wall in warm hues as a gesture to its more delicate southern neighbor.