San Francisco’s Garfield Center gets new cultural-focused upgrades

A new renovation to the Garfield Center pool complex in San Francisco’s Mission District will add a new 316 m2 (3400 sf) clubhouse and connecting entry lobby, all brought to colorful life with a new mural celebrating Latinx culture. Courtesy Bruce Damonte

A new renovation to the Garfield Center in San Francisco’s Mission District has added a new 316 m2 (3400 sf) clubhouse and connecting entry lobby, all brought to colorful life with a new mural celebrating Latinx culture.  

The upgrade of the natatorium, provided by TEF Design in a joint venture with Paulett Taggart Architects, removed nonconforming exterior additions and the south façade’s 1980 diptych mural, “Primal Sea,” was restored by its creator Precita Eyes. The building’s canted western façade, obscured over time, was restored with a glass curtain wall featuring a colorful mural, by Bay Area artist Favianna Rodriguez, celebrating the Latinx diaspora of immigrants in the Mission District.

Inside, the rehabilitated pool features a movable bulkhead to support simultaneous pool use by both lap swimmers and young children and elders with mobility challenges. Reconfigured and modernized restrooms and locker rooms enhance functionality and accessibility.

The glass entry lobby offers views through the courtyard and soccer fields beyond while supporting use of the clubhouse after pool hours. Clad in colored phenolic panels and housing public restrooms and a flexible multipurpose room, the new clubhouse defers to the historic natatorium and opens to a new courtyard connecting the structures.

The community hub has delayed its opening until July due to the pandemic.

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