San Francisco Bay’s islands are going green, first with the renovation of Alcatraz, and now with the major redevelopment of a completely sustainable city on Treasure Island. The 400-acre man-made island, originally built for The World’s Fair in 1939, will once again be a showcase for design excellence- this time going totally sustainable. The revamped Treasure Island will include 6,000 units of housing in both low-rise and high-rise buildings, restaurants, a ferry terminal, as well as a 20-acre organic farm, an ecological educational and art park, shoreline park, wind farm, and plenty of green space in the forms of parkland and runoff-filtering wetlands.
All is underway with the approval this last December from the San Francisco Board of Supervisors for a self-sustaining city that encompasses a major urban renewal. The actual development plans only occupies 100 of the 400-acre island, which means high density, pedestrian and bike-friendly neighborhoods is in this little island’s future.
Planning for the redevelopment of Treasure Island started back in 2001 through a request for proposals. Skidmore, Owning and Merrill (SOM) lead the design team for the development, supported by two local San Francisco firms, SMWM and CMG Landscape Architects. In the development phase, Arup was brought in to advise on transportation planning, site infrastructure and sustainability strategies. Scheduled completion for this significant self-sustaining community is planned for 2022 with the first new residents occupying new sustainable towers as early as 2013.
SOM partner Craig Hartman hopes treasure island will serve as “a new national model for what a wholly sustainable community can be about.” San Francisco’s Department of the Environment couldn’t agree more. This video includes comments from Jennier Kass, from the Dept. of the Environment, explaining all the sustainable aspects of the new development: