Zuckerberg San Francisco General Hospital & Trauma center

Modernizing Public Healthcare

The San Francisco General Hospital & Trauma Center (SFGH) project consists of the design of a new 284-bed, 9-story, state-of-the-art general acute care hospital for the City and County of San Francisco. The new hospital will provide a humanistic, culturally competent, and healing health service environment, and incorporates leading practices of sustainable design, patient comfort, cost effective construction and efficient hospital operation. Building departments include diagnostic and treatment facilities, an emergency trauma center, and auxiliary support and administration areas.

The concept design of the building was heavily influenced by the interior layout and operation of the hospital, as well as by the materiality and form of the neighboring historic buildings.

The overall building form consists of three primary components – a three-story, rectangular diagnostic and treatment podium, a six-story patient bed tower comprised of two offset half rounds, and a seven-story, parallelogram tower housing a majority of the hospital’s support, utility and vertical conveyance systems as well as patient isolation bedrooms. The shape of each building component was selected for its effectiveness in accommodating the extensive program and for optimizing the operational flow and efficiency of every hospital department. Furthermore, the circular form of the patient bed tower opens-up the building’s corners to permit expansive views of the outdoors, and to maximize the view to the adjacent historic buildings from Potrero Avenue.

The design features and materials employed on the building exterior project a modern image, while still complementing existing campus architecture. Intricate brick detailing recalls construction of the past, and forms both a visual and material tie to the adjacent historic buildings. The prolific use of glazing highlights the transparency of the structure, resulting in an inviting and non-institutional experience for the building occupant. Horizontal perforated sunscreens encircle the glazed curtain-wall facades of the patient bed tower to control solar heat gain. Vegetated, vertical sunscreens are incorporated at the podium and the patient bed tower, not only to block morning and afternoon sun, but also to introduce nature into the building for a healing environment.

The building also incorporates a base-isolated foundation system to provide on-going operation after major seismic activities.



San Francisco, California


Completed 2016


550,000 gross square feet


Base Isolation
Interior Design
Master Planning
Construction Management

Project Features

9-Story Acute Care Hospital
Trauma Center
Base Isolated Foundation
Shading Devices


$650 Million

LEED Certification



2016 Project of the Year, California Council
2016 Award of Excellence, Structural Engineers Association of Northern California
2016 People's Choice Award, AISC
2016 Best Sustainable Design, BUILD Architecture Awards
2016 Best Master Planning, BUILD Architecture Awards
2016 Healthcare Building Project, BUILD Architecture Awards
2016 Award of Excellence, APWA Norcal Awards
2016 Best Project Northern California-Hawaii Region, Engineering News-Record
2012 Design Award of Excellence, SARA

The [San Francisco General Hospital & Trauma Center} is a beautiful design. You are the best hospital architects.
— Mitchell Katz, Director, Department of Public Health, City and County of San Francisco