Structure Type: built works - commercial buildings - office buildings

Designers: Polk, Willis, and Company (firm); Willis Jefferson Polk (architect)

Dates: constructed 1913-1914

21 stories, total floor area: 75,482 sq. ft.

582 Market Street
Financial District, San Francisco, CA 94104-5301

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The address of the Hobart Building was 582-592 Market Street, at 2nd Street.


San Francisco architect Willis J. Polk designed this 21-story, Renaissance-Baroque Revival skyscraper erected in only 11 months. Polk gave it a tripartite composition, with a clearly delineated base, shaft and top, much like other notable skyscrapers of the period, such as New York's Singer Building or the Woolworth Building or, on the Pacific Coast, Seattle's Smith Tower. After 1906, all of San Francisco's high-rise buildings all had to possess earthquake-resistant structures, utilizing steel-frame or reinforced concrete, or some combination of both. In the Hobart Building's case, its frame was of steel, and its floors, roof and walls were composed of reinforced concrete. (See Michael Corbett, Splendid Survivors San Francisco's Downtown Architectural Heritage, [San Francisco: California Living Books, 1979], p. 81.)

Building History

The Bernheim Family Trust conveyed the deed of the building to the San Francisco-based holding company Niantic Corporation on 06/30/1993. Niantic, on the same day, transferred a deed of trust to the Imperial Thrift and Loan Association. Eight years later, the Niantic Corporation transferred the deed of trust to Washington Mutual Bank FA, on 04/24/2001, and six years after this, transferred the deed of trust to thePresidio Bank on 12/06/2007. The Niantic Corporation made another deed of trust to 20 individuals or corporate entities on 01/28/2010. In 2011, Niantic Corporation changed its name to NIantic Holdings LLC. Niantic Holdings LLC created two deeds of trust with the Mechanics Bank on 09/25/2012 and 03/24/2016.

Building Notes

Architect Polk had a disagreement with City Fire Inspectors over the fire insulation of the walls in the Hobart Building.

According to architectural historian, Stephen Tobriner, "The steel frame of the [Hobart Building] was designed with large knee bracing to resist earthquakes." (See Stephen Tobriner, 1906 San Francisco Earthquake Centennial Field Guides: Field Trips, Boulder, CO: Geological Society of America, 2006], p. 35.)

In 1947, the Laird Market, a gifts company, occupied Office #1211 in the Hobart Building.

In 2016, the San Francisco County Assessor indicated that the Hobart Building and its 8,960-square-foot property had a value of $8,570,890, of which the land was worth $3,221,969. The assessor indicated that the building contained 285 rooms and 40 bathrooms.

San Francisco Historic Landmark: 162

San Francisco County Assessor Number: 0291006

PCAD id: 7836