The Best New Buildings In The Bay Area

The San Francisco chapter of the American Institute of Architects recently announced the winners of their annual Design Awards, which honour Bay Area-based architects and designers who made a significant achievement the previous year.

Winners were chosen in five categories: architecture, interior architecture, energy and sustainability, historic preservation, and unbuilt design. While most of the buildings are located in San Francisco, a few are imagined by architects based in the City by the Bay, but located elsewhere.

From a house floating on stilts to a new startup office space, there’s plenty of eye-popping design to be seen.

CITATION, ARCHITECTURE: This LEED-certified natatorium aims to be a force for positive social and environmental change in East Oakland.

CITATION, ARCHITECTURE: A renovated storefront on San Francisco's hip Valencia Street incorporates a perforated metal screen overhead.

MERIT, ARCHITECTURE: The stunning glass and stucco building at 300 Cornwall Street consists of six homes and corner retail space.

MERIT, ARCHITECTURE: This design is the first phase of what will eventually be two blocks of affordable housing in a historically crime-ridden part of San Francisco.

MERIT, ARCHITECTURE: The architects from San Francisco-based WRNS Studio designed this breathtaking building for Adobe's new campus in Lehi, Utah.

MERIT, ARCHITECTURE: Palo Alto's new Apple store has a stunning storefront made of 180 lineal feet of glass.

HONOUR, ARCHITECTURE: The Moose Road Residence sits on steel stilts overlooking a wooded valley in Hopland, Calif., about 100 miles north of San Francisco.

HONOUR, ARCHITECTURE: This home is an imposing addition to San Francisco's South of Market neighbourhood.

CITATION, INTERIORS: Wurster Hall is the home of UC Berkeley's College of Environmental Design. The award-winning project includes updates to the reception desk and mailbox system, made up of two large aluminium sheets.

CITATION, INTERIORS: Square's new headquarters has a large cafe, glass-walled conference rooms, and a wide central walkway.

CITATION, INTERIORS: This building, which dates back to 1906, was recently renovated to include a large steel-framed bay window and an open roof deck.

MERIT, INTERIORS: Columns, beams, and ceilings made out of douglas fir make for a beautifully open interior in this loft.

MERIT, INTERIOR: The new design for this local coffee shop uses warm materials to accentuate the space's natural light.

CITATION, ENERGY + SUSTAINABILITY: Sweetwater Spectrum is an organisation that provides housing for adults with autism. Their new building in Sonoma includes a sustainable design in addition to its autism-specific features.

CITATION, ENERGY + SUSTAINABILITY: The 6,300-square-foot library at this K-8 school in Atherton, Calif. was designed to meet the Living Building challenge and has achieved net zero energy.

MERIT, ENERGY + SUSTAINABILITY: This research facility at the University of California, Davis has a set of experimental equipment designed to conserve energy and water during the winemaking process.

HONOUR, ENERGY + SUSTAINABILITY: Located on San Francisco's historic Embarcadero waterfront, this building is the country's largest net-zero energy museum.

CITATION, HISTORIC PRESERVATION: Originally constructed in 1928, this Sacramento courthouse recently underwent an extensive rehabilitation.

MERIT, HISTORIC PRESERVATION: The Hallidie Building dates back to 1918 and is listed on the National Register of Historic Places.

HONOUR, HISTORIC PRESERVATION: This WWII-era building now serves as a community center for Richmond, Calif. residents. It was updated to achieve LEED Gold certification.

HONOUR, HISTORIC PRESERVATION: This award-winning project took a previously run-down building in Oakland and turned it into an attractive affordable housing complex.

CITATION, UNBUILT: The Ambient House is an imagined multilayer structure that could be transformed to the inhabitants' liking.

CITATION, UNBUILT: The concept for this unbuilt Chinese hospital includes a curving structure meant to reflect the energy of Chi.

CITATION, UNBUILT: Once completed, this building in Novato, Calif. will house a permanent collection of Native American artifacts.

MERIT, UNBUILT: The Oakland Food Hub would be a modern take on the traditional market, with stalls for local farmers, educational facilities, and a business incubator.

HONOUR, UNBUILT: This future building would help support local communities in South Africa. The roof could capture rainwater for drinking and provide radiant thermal conditioning of the interior spaces.

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