Clock Tower Lofts All projects, Lofts, Market-Rate, Re-Use, San Francisco
San Francisco, California

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The Bay Bridge under construction as seen from the Clock Tower. This photograph was most likely taken during the early 1930s, before the concrete warehouse section of the building was constructed.

The Clock Tower Building was originally constructed in 1907 for the Max Schmidt Lithograph Corporation, a printing firm that designed and produced the classic California fruit box labels and posters for the Panama Public International Expedition. The concrete, brick, and timber structure was renovated into 127 live/work lofts resulting in a rich variety of unique unit types particularly suited to the emerging lifestyle of home offices and electronic commutes.

Courtyard view.

Staircase at main entry.

The building, an amalgamation of four phases of construction in timber, masonry and concrete with a 15 story steel frame clock tower, provided the opportunity to create the environment of a "district" as opposed to that of an apartment complex, resulting in a rich variety of unique interiors; no two units are alike.

The lofts, ranging in size from 600 to 5,000 square feet, are arranged around three landscaped courtyards which were excised from the volume of the existing building. These courtyards as well as other public spaces are augmented by custom stairs, undulating mahogany entry doors, individual entry lighting and signage fixtures, and colored concrete fountains, all products of design collaboration with local artisans.

Penthouse unit at night.


Design Excellence Award - Adaptive Use
American Society of Interior Designers
Design Excellence Award - Adaptive Use
American Society of Interior Designers
Award of Merit for Residential Design Excellence
Interior Architecture Awards, San Francisco Chapter, American Institute of Architects


A Community of Entrepreneurs

project details


Holliday Development


David Baker Architects

Landscape Architect

Andrea Cochran Landscape Architects

Structural Engineer

Tipping Mar + Associates

Artisan Metal Fabricator

South Park Fabricators


J.D. Petersen


project data
Clock Tower Lofts
461 Second Street
San Francisco, California
Completed 1992
number of units
1 bedroom 126
2 bedroom 1
total 127
density ratios
project sf 230,000
site sf 56,000
acres 1.3
total bedrooms 128
bedrooms/acre 100
units/acre 99
total 92
spaces/unit 0.72
type existing building