San Ramon

In San Ramon, a great city in the valley, the people who move about cannot help but be influenced by scenic beauty, sunny climate and large park systems. But for most, moving around in Sam Ramon is the benefit of having a close proximity to both work and leisure with over three thousand local businesses as well as availability to   the Bay Area’s mayor employment areas. San Ramon, with its high quality of life, is at the heart of the west coast progression.

image courtesy of flickr user Dave Parker

San Ramon is often described as a modern village, a history of small towns that constituted the area of the San Ramon valley. It was only in 1983, that voters decided to incorporate a separate city; now the region is home to over 500 global companies with over 8 million sq feet of office space, considered one of the San Francisco Bay’s premier business communities. With a recent announcement of a revised plan for the City Center, plans are going back to values of community-gathering and neighborhood atmosphere, that of the original small towns of the Valley.

  • 1868

    Transcontinental Railroad Terminus Development of Oakland as major seaport
  • 1900

    First community hall established in San Ramon. Bishop Ranch largest block of bartlet pears in the world established in San Ramon. Passenger service on rail line stops.
  • 1906

    San Francisco Earthquake causes refugees to flee to the relatively undamaged East Bay.
  • 1936

    SF-Oakland Bay Bridge
    Permanent physical link with SF. Population doubled between 1940 and 1960, doubled again by 2000.
  • 1937

    Caldecott Tunnel
    Access to undeveloped land in Diablo Valley (Concord and Walnut Creek). Concord and Walnut Creek populations increased tenfold between 1950 and 1970.
  • 1947 – 1958

    I-880
    Replaces SR-17 street route. Connects East Bay cities along shoreline between Oakland and San Jose, connects to SF-Oakland Bay Bridge.
  • 1954

    I-80
    Replaces original Eastshore Highway with modern freeway, connects SF-Oakland Bay Bridge with Sacramento, Reno, to New Jersey.
  • 1955

    I-680
    Replaces roadway existing since the 1920’s, incorporated in segments as interstate freeway between mid-50’s to mid-70’s.
  • 1963 – 1984

    I-580
    Replaces US-50 right of way
  • 1970

    San Ramon: “New Town” proposal
    at Bishop Ranch after a large land purchase by Western Electric. Beginning of suburban development: first suburban homes, park & community services. Pop: 4,084
  • 1972

    BART
    Increased access to more outlying areas.
  • 1980

    San Ramon incorporated as a city.
    Explosion of business parks. Toyota Facility, Pacific Bell complex & Chevron Park open at Bishop Ranch. Bollinger Canyon (California funded interstate interchange) connects I-680 to San Ramon. Pop: 22,356
  • 1990

    San Ramon Transit Center completed.
    Railway line is converted into the Iron Horse Trail, a 33- mile pedestrian/ cycle route. Business parks construction continues to rise. Pop: 35,303
  • 2000

    San Ramon: Suburban development rises.
    Sunset Development launches campaign for downtown center for San Ramon. Economic downturn haults the provision. Large corporations migrate into business parks in the city.
    Pop: 44,792
  • 2010

    San Ramon: Jobs, great schools and public parks provide benefits to the city, though a physical ‘heart’ has never been identified In 2030, San Ramon expects to accommodate 58,769 jobs in the City of San Ramon, with a desire to implement Smart Growth. Pop: 72,148

SUSTAINING A HQ FROM THE 80’s

The business vibration constantly stirs San Ramon; a good example is the previous AT&T Corporate Center, a 1.8 M square feet giant, four story regional headquarters in San Ramon. The building was designed by SOM in the mid 80’s, unconventionally connecting a business center with an integral lake, using the water as supplemental cooling for the building, something that was perceived as innovative energy strategy at the time. The mammoth building was put up for sale last year, relocating the 8500 AT&T employees to Texas. However with new city plans of San Ramon, the sale of the centrally located office building is seen as an opportunity rather than a loss, a chance to breathe new air into the town, replacing jobs with jobs.

NEW TECH AT OLD SITE

The old AT&T site was not a hard sale. The Bishop Ranch Business Park teamed up with investors to buy the massive headquarters in order to create a modern tech orientated entrepreneur hub.

They thought if new, smaller business were to move in, their collective dreams and admirations would become a carousel of innovation, as a dynamic part of the community-gathering culture of San Ramon.

By putting the price of a newly renovated office space at as little as a half the price of a prime office in Silicon Valley, new tenants are queuing up. With the shortage in both offices and housing, the bishops Ranch and would become a good alternative, where employees can walk or ride a bike to home, work and leisure.

  • Current Site

    The four wings that constitute the AT&T building will be further articulated, as the renovation will bring out the essence of the site and its landscape. Building out on each wing to accommodate for new meeting rooms and collaborative spaces, new open areas will be available. The significant integration with the lake will also be enhanced, emphasizing the indoor/outdoor feel and build on the objective to incorporate the natural landscape. A central part of the proposal is also to open up the building to people around it, inviting and building access to leisure, by incorporating restaurants, bars and a theatre as well as increasing the use of the water amenities.
  • Proposal

    The four wings that constitute the AT&T building will be further articulated, as the renovation will bring out the essence of the site and its landscape. Building out on each wing to accommodate for new meeting rooms and collaborative spaces, new open areas will be available. The significant integration with the lake will also be enhanced, emphasizing the indoor/outdoor feel and build on the objective to incorporate the natural landscape. A central part of the proposal is also to open up the building to people around it, inviting and building access to leisure, by incorporating restaurants, bars and a theatre as well as increasing the use of the water amenities.

The previous architects built the AT&T headquarters on a lake, a massive structure on top of a natural landscape. For the renovation of the building, the vision is to dim the lines and become less insular. The lake represents nature itself and can well be used to connect to an outdoor, more health orientated environment. Focus areas in the re-development will therefore be wellness with increased outdoor activities making use of the environmental strategies originally introduced- passive cooling and natural heating creating a net zero building for the future.

× Gensler – San Ramon:

Gensler San Ramon

John Falconer
Paul Choi
Prasert Wiwatyukhan
Robert Shurell
Ryan Cook
Mike Hagelsieb
Armita Lor Kalantari
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