San Francisco’s eastern waterfront is in the midst of a renaissance that is transforming it from a dilapidated warehouse district into one of the city’s focal points.
The largest current construction project is at Piers 27 and 29, which are being transformed first into the viewing area for the 2013 America’s Cup races, and then into a replacement for the aging cruise ship terminal at Pier 35.
Along the Embarcadero, a 2.5-acre area, formerly the home of Teatro ZinZanni and the west end of the Pier 27 shed, will become a waterfront plaza.
A 10-Acre Triangle on the Waterfront
Piers 27 and 29, at the foot of Battery and Lobard where they meet the Embarcadero, are unique in that they are at an angle to one another and are joined at the end to make a huge triangular area, 10 acres in all. Each pier was covered by a large maritime shed.
The shed on Pier 27 has already been demolished, and construction of the new James R. Herman cruise ship terminal is well under way.
Pier 29 Being Restored
The northern edge of the triangle, occupied by Pier 29, will be left partly intact to preserve the historic building, which dates back to 1915-1918. A June 2012 fire destroyed part of the building, but it is being restored.
Cruise Ship Terminal
The satellite photo on the left shows the Pier 27-29 area. The long, dark vertical stripe is the old shed at Pier 27, now demolished.
When completed, the 1,358-foot berth will be able to accommodate the largest visiting cruise ships. It is designed to handle 2,600 passengers routinely, and up to 4,000 in a pinch. Pier 35 will become the back-up berth when two ships are in the city at the same time.
San Francisco gets 40 to 80 cruise ships a year visiting the port. When ships are not in port, the terminal will be available for other events.
The slideshow below shows renderings of what the cruise ship terminal will look like.
America’s Cup Headquarters
Before the new structure on Pier 27 takes on its life as a cruise ship terminal, it will serve as the primary viewing area for the 2013 America’s Cup races. This first phase of construction is set to be complete in March 2013. Then, once the races are over, a second phase of construction, scheduled for Oct. 2013 to May 2014, will convert the building into the cruise ship terminal, set to open in 2014.