PBS Commissioner Winstead Details Highlights of San Francisco Federal Building

As prepared for delivery


Remarks by
 David Winstead
Public Buildings Service Commissioner
U.S. General Services Administration
Dedication: San Francisco Federal Building
San Francisco, California
July 9, 2007


Thank you very much, Peter (Stamison); good afternoon, everyone:

  • Madam Speaker
  • Congressman Regula
  • Mayor Newsom
  • Architect Thom Mayne

This is a great day and I am pleased to be here.  I’m excited because it isn’t often that one project does so much to capture – and so proudly announce – what we’re all about at GSA and the Public Buildings Service.

PBS is one of the largest public real estate organizations in the world: 8,600 buildings; more than 350 million square feet of rentable space across the U.S.; and steward of more than 425 historic properties. We serve over 1 million federal employees at over 400 agencies and bureaus. 

And now we serve 1,500 more of our colleagues, in a federal building unlike any other federal building in the nation.  Five years after breaking ground, we’ve returned here today to celebrate not just the present, but the future, for this amazing structure will yield benefits for years to come.

I won’t repeat the names of all who contributed to the success of this project.  But I would like to thank the PBS team in San Francisco, led by Jeff Neeley, and Project Manager, Maria Ciprazo, for their hard work not only in getting this project on-line, but for the work they do to ensure that federal agencies in San Francisco have the workplaces they need to accomplish their missions.  Please know that I, too, deeply appreciate your energy, your skill and your perseverance. I would also like to thank Administrator, Lurita Doan, for bringing to GSA a culture of action, high performance and accountability. Her spirited and unflagging support of PBS has inspired our workforce and helped us produce the type of results you see here today.

Consider: the tower is cooled with natural ventilation—a very sustainable solution.  This building was designed to exceed the most stringent energy code in the country, California’s title 24 by 20 percent.  GSA’s national average energy use for federal buildings is about 69,000 btus.  Remarkably, this one will require only 27,000 BTUs.  I should mention that 80 percent of the building takes advantage of natural light.  This is an important achievement for office buildings where electric lighting typically represents 35 percent of total energy used.  All that and more adds up to a very high-performance green building, and hopefully a silver leadership in energy and environmental (LEED) rating.

This is another fine example of public architecture built under GSA’s Design Excellence Program.  I had the pleasure of appointing our newest set of private sector peers last fall in San Francisco.  These peers are architects, engineers, urban planners and other design disciplines who pay an important role in ensuring that we are getting the highest quality in design and functionality.  I think we accomplished this with this new federal building.

 This complex is also adorned with art as bold as this great American city, and already christened as “daunting,” “dazzling,” and yes, a bit “provocative” – is certainly among our most impressive art-in-architecture works of art.

As PBS Commissioner, my job is to make sure we live up to our mission of providing world-class workplaces to our federal customer agencies at good economies to the American taxpayers.  Each project is unique, though none is quite as unique as the newest addition to the San Francisco Skyline.

Thank you for working with us, for your support, and for letting us be a part of this terrific celebration.


Last Reviewed 2010-04-30