David Baker Architects

Folsom & Dore

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Context view up Folsom street. Image: Brian Rose.

Folsom + Dore is the first multi-family building to achieve LEED Silver Certification in Northern California.

These 98 rental units of supportive affordable housing serve tenants with special needs, such as physical and developmental disabilities, HIV/AIDS, and chronic homelessness. Folsom + Dore is the first new building in San Francisco to receive a LEED Silver rating, and its sustainable features both reduce its environmental impact and curtail the energy costs borne by residents. The entry garden court and green stair, filled with giant bamboo, provide a transitional decompression space between the homes and the hard urban environment outside. Residential parking has been greatly reduced, making way for a hybrid car-share vehicle and protected bicycle parking.

Folsom Street elevation at dusk.

Inside Folsom + Dore

 We visited Folsom + Dore with photographer Bill Owens> to meet the residents of these supportive apartments in San Francisco's SOMA neighborhood.


Inside Folsom + Dore from Db+P, Architects on Vimeo.

PDF IconFolsom-dore-leed-nc-checklist

Check out the PDF of Folsom Dore's LEED New Construction project checklist.


Context view up Dore Street. Image: Brian Rose.

Dore Street elevation. Image: Brian Rose.

Front gate. Image: Brian Rose.

Resident at grand opening.

Larry, raising his son at Folsom + Dore. Image: Bill Owens.

Flora, a Folsom + Dore resident. Image: Bill Owens.

Flexible space in common area. Image: Brian Rose.

The top floor features loft units.

Green stair in use.

Computer rendering of "nested" units: A studio with sleeping alcove and, to the right, a one-bedroom unit. 

Video made by the Home Depot Foundation for the 2007 Award of Excellence: Affordable Housing Built Responsibly presentation at Greenbuild 2007.

“In Folsom + Dore Apartments, Citizens Housing Corporation has created one of the most innovative, multi-dimensional green affordable housing projects in the country. Redeveloping a brownfield site in an up-and-coming neighborhood and creating a transit-oriented development that provides efficient, healthy and affordable apartments to low- and very low-income residents with special needs is a noteworthy accomplishment. To do so while sensitively addressing community concerns and achieving LEED Silver certification is truly remarkable.”
—Home Depot Foundation Awards Advisory Committee

2007 Home Depot Award from Db+P, Architects on Vimeo.

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Original facade before renovation.

Corner elevation. Image: Brian Rose.

Folsom street facade. Image: Brian Rose.

Support services office. Image: Brian Rose.

common area.

Kitchen view from loft.

A computer visualization of a loft unit done during the design phase.

Photovoltaic rooftop panels.

Orange stair. Image: Brian Rose.

Orange stair. Image: Brian Rose.


The corten planters allow bamboo to grow over the garage podium.

A corten planter soon after opening that has not developed it's oxidation layer fully yet.

The same planter after a few years of service with the rust shield fully developed. Note the gravel bed prevents iron oxide staining of the topping slab.

Back courtyard.

Back courtyard sketch.

Courtyard at night.

Material detail.

Dore street elevation. Image: Brian Rose.

View of Dore Alley elevation from the construction site next door.

The awesome building staff. Image: Bill Owens.

Ground floor plan.

Upper floor plan.


2007 Award of Excellence—Affordable Housing Built Responsibly
Home Depot Foundation
Exceptional Residential Bay Area Design—Merit Award
AIA East Bay
Honor Award—Energy and Sustainability
San Francisco Chapter, American Institute of Architects
Merit Award—Excellence in Architecture
San Francisco Chapter, American Institute of Architects
National Green Building Award
American Institute of Architects
Gold Nugget Grand Award—Best Affordable
Pacific Coast Builders Conference
Gold Nugget Grand Award—Sustainable Residential Neighborhood
Pacific Coast Builders Conference
Gold Nugget Grand Award—Sustainable Residential Neighborhood
Pacific Coast Builders Conference
Gold Nugget Award of Merit—Attached Residential Project of the Year
Pacific Coast Builders Conference


South of Market: LEED-certified Folsom + Dore Apartments in San Francisco Combine Affordable Housing with Sustainable Features
2007 Award of Excellence: Affordable Housing Built Responsibly
2007 Build it Green Home Tour
Vitamin C
Beyond Expectations
Tour of the Innovative Folsom Dore Apartments
Do-Good Digs
Causes Close to the Heart

endorsed by:

Housing Action Coalition

project details


Affordable Housing, All Projects, Apartments, LEED, San Francisco


San Francisco, California

Nonprofit Housing Developer

Citizens Housing Corporation (now TNDC)


David Baker Architects

Associate Architect

Baker Vilar Architects

Landscape Architect

Andrea Cochran Landscape Architects

Structural Engineer

OLMM Consulting Engineers

Electrical Engineer

Bhatia Associates

Lighting Designer

Horton Lees Brogden

Geotech Engineer

Treadwell + Rollo

Mechanical/Plumbing Engineer

Tommy Siu + Associates

Acoustical Engineer

Wilson Ihrig + Associates


Cahill Contractors

Civil Engineer

Luk + Associates



project data
Folsom Dore Supportive Apartments 20108
75 Dore Street
San Francisco, California
Completed April 2005
number of units
studio 45
1 bedroom 45
2 bedroom 8
total 98
density ratios
project sf 79,152
site sf 25,292
acres 0.6
total bedrooms 106
bedrooms/acre 183
units/acre 169
total 30
spaces/unit 0.31
type podium
bicycle 28
LEED ND Silver April 2007