Case Studies

San Francisco Public Utilities

Project Team

San Francisco Public Utilities Commission


KMD Architects

General Contractor:

Webcor Builders


D&J Industries

The Sierra White® granite is quarried out of Coldspring’s quarry in Raymond, California. This project was also fabricated at Coldspring’s fabrication facility in Raymond. The quarry’s location contributed in gaining LEED qualification sought by the owner and architect. The new 13-floor, 277,000-square-foot office building is slated to achieve a LEED Platinum rating from the United States Green Building Council (USGBC).

Building this structure called for a combination of styles. “What we tried to do is to create architecture that appeals to the neo-classical Civic Center Plaza but also is clearly a building that looks to the future – aesthetically and technologically,” said Michael Rossetto, senior associate, KMD Architects. “Additionally, one of the primary goals we had was to building something sustainable — to build something durable and beautiful so you’re not compelled to tear it down in 20 years.” Specifically, the goal was to create a 100 year building, so durability of the materials was important. Using granite was the perfect transitional material between the newer innovations incorporated and the design of the civic center. Additionally, design called for a tremendous use of glass in the building and the granite provided a great anchor and balance with the glass.

KMD had worked with Coldspring on previous projects, but had not seen their operations first hand. For this project Frank Sheng, a senior designer and technical architect on the project, traveled to their quarry and Coldspring showed him the quarry, down to the precise spot where the granite slab would come from.

“Visiting the quarry, where the stone was coming from, and seeing their ability to cut and bevel the stone was impressive,” said Sheng. “It was a very rewarding experience, we learned a lot from it.”

“Coldspring helped us when we were focusing on the technological aspects of the stone,” said Rossetto. “We spent a lot of time studying the different corner joints, the pros and the cons on how the stone would meet at the corners, the ability of the stone to be cut and beveled, and anchoring to a curtain wall system.” Coldspring provided guidance and answers throughout the process.  “The most rewarding sensation is to look at this monument and know it will be around for another 100 years,” said Rossetto.


Photo Credit Tom Clark

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