AKA: Baker & Hamilton Building, SoMa, San Francisco, CA; Baker and Hamilton Building, SoMa, San Francisco, CA

Structure Type: built works - commercial buildings - office buildings; built works - commercial buildings - stores

Designers: Cannon Constructors (firm); Forell / Elsesser Engineers, Incorporated (firm); Sutton and Weeks, Architects (firm); Weeks, Charles Peter, Architect (firm); Cannon (building contractor); Eric Elsesser (structural engineer); Nicholas Forell (structural engineer); Albert Sutton (architect); Charles Peter Weeks (architect)

Dates: constructed 1904-1905

3 stories, total floor area: 150,000 sq. ft.

601 Townsend Street
San Francisco, CA 94103-4907

OpenStreetMap (new tab)
Google Map (new tab)
click to view google map
Google Streetview (new tab)
click to view google map

Architects Charles Peter Weeks (1870-1928) and Albert Sutton (1867-1923) collaborated on the design of this office building/warehouse for the Pacific Hardware and Steel Company in San Francisco's South of Market (SoMa) Neighborhood. Pacific Hardware and Steel Company combined with the Baker and Hamilton Company in 1918, and the building became associated with the latter firm.

This turn-of-the-century commercial building is a rare survivor of the April 1906 San Francisco Earthquake, and is listed on the National Register of Historic Places, level of significance: Local. The building had three stories, with the second floor illuminated by pairs of double hung windows. The third floor was lit by a trio of double-hung windows and clerestory lights, the clerestory having a segmental arch shape. Diamond shaped vents admitted ventilation into the attic. Brick quoins ornamented the building's corners. The building had a flat rood with a parapet. Windows of the first floor were arched, set off by elaborate brick coursework and faux voussoirs.

The unreinforced brick Baker and Hamilton Building underwent seismic retrofitting in 2006; Forell/Elsesser Engineers, Incorporated, served on the renovation team along with Cannon Constructors. According to information supplied by Forell/Elsesser: "Conversion and rehabilitation of this 150,000 sf San Francisco historic landmark unreinforced brick masonry building to commercial office space. Upgrade included addition of shotcrete walls and steel braced frames, diaphragm strengthening, addition of subdiaphragm cross-ties, and masonry wall anchorage." (See "Baker Hamilton Building,"Accessed 04/09/2012.)

San Francisco Historic Landmark: 193

National Register of Historic Places (February 9, 2005): 5000001 NRHP Images (pdf) NHRP Registration Form (pdf)

PCAD id: 7576