Salesforce Tower

Salesforce Tower
  1. About the Salesforce Tower in San Francisco
    1. Prizes & Awards
  2. Architect and team
  3. Architectureal style
  4. Spaces and uses
  5. Structure and materials

The Salesforce Tower is a Contemporary skyscraper designed in 2005 by Pelli Clark & Partners, in association with Kendall Heaton Associates, and built between 2013 and 2018, for a reported $1.10 billion dollars, in San Francisco, CA.

Its precise street address is 415 Mission Street, San Francisco, CA. You can also find it on the map here.

The Salesforce Tower has received multiple architecture awards for its architectural design since . The following is a list of such prizes and awards:

  • CTBUH Best Tall Building in 2019
  • Global Best Project, Engineering News Record in 2018
  • Award of Excellence, AIA Connecticut in 2018
  • The American Architecture Award, The Chicago Athenaeum: Museum of Architecture and Design, The European Centre for Architecture Art Design and Urban Studies in 2020

The Salesforce Tower is connected to the city’s brand-new Transit Center, which is developed beneath a 21,853 square meter park which was also designed by Pelli Clark & Partners.

At the time of its completion in 2018 the Salesforce Tower incorporated solutions that were quite advanced at the time, these included a blackwater on-site recycling system, which was the largest in a high-rise commercial building in the United States and the first of its kind in San Francisco. The Blackwater system reduces drinking water use by 3 billion liters per year.

Building's timeline

Design completed
Construction begins
Construction completed
years ago

Architect and team

Pelli Clark & Partners was the architecture firm in charge of the architectural design, in association with Kendall Heaton Associates.

Pelli Clark & Partners was in charge of the architectural design, however, architecture is a complex discipline, which usually involves many professionals from different fields, without whom this building would have not been possible. We will surely be leaving out a lot of names here, but here is a list of the people we do know also played their part in making the Salesforce Tower a reality:

  • Magnusson Klemencic Associates in charge of Structural Engineering
  • Clark Constrruction, and Hathaway Dinwiddie Joint Venture as the Main Contractor
  • Morrison Hershfield in charge of Facade Consultancy
  • Schindler as the company in charge of the elevators system
  • Boston Properties, Inc., and Hines Interests Limited Partnership as the Main Developer
  • WSP Group in charge of MEP Engineering
  • Peter Walker & Partners in charge of Landscape Architecture
  • Jim Campbell as the collaborating Artist

Architectural Style

The Salesforce Tower can be categorized as a Contemporary building.

Contemporary style architecture builds on top of the principles of Modernism and Postmodernism, but incorporates other variables which might not have been that important in the past, but certainly are today, such as technology, sustainability, inclusivity, and others.

From a historical point of view, it is hard to categorize things from a not-so-distant time, and therefore we choose to categorize most buildings built after the year 2000 as "Contemporary". It is possible that as time goes by and we, as a society, gain perspective on the things happening today, we'll be able to look back and recategorize all these buildings into more concrete subsections, some of which might not even exist today.

Spaces & Uses

The Salesforce Tower reaches an architectural height of 1070ft (326m), with the last accesible floor being 902ft (275m) off the gorund. It has a total of 64 floors, 61 above ground and 3 basements, served by 34 elevators.

Ever since opening its doors to the public in 2018, the Salesforce Tower has mainly been used as Commercial space.

1070ft (326m)
902ft (275m)
3 basements

Materials & Structure

The Salesforce Tower uses a framed tube-in-tube structure , with steel columns and reinforced concrete slabs.

A framed tube-in-tube structure uses a central core, known as inner tube, which usually holds stairs, lifts and installations, and a perimeter of columns around it, which form the exterior tube. The interior tube is tipically more massive (often made of reinforced concrete), and the exterior tube is "lighter" (made of steel or concrete columns). Both tubes are conencted via horizontal elements which make up the floors and also transmit any horizontal froces from the facade to the core.

It is uncommon for a framed tube-in-tube structure type building to have a non-load-bearing facade, as the exterior "tube" is usually integrated into the facade.

The structural steel frame surrounding the tower's reinforced concrete core stands in an earthquake-prone area. To address this, its structure was built with 42 piles going as deep as 90 meters into the bedrock to support a 4.3-meter thick slab

From an aesthetic point of view, the facade features a reflective glass curved curtain wall. The corners of the building are heavily rounded, but even the four sides of the squared-based floorplan are not perfectly straight and continue with a slight curve. A small, white metallic eave marks each floor, while also hiding a grille that allows for air to flow into the building and circulate through the technical floors and ceilings, helping to bring fresh air into the building. Crowning the building above the top floor is a semi-transparent structure that lights up at night and can even project some low-res graphics.