Webcor Delivers State-of-the-Art China Basin Park, Transforming SF Waterfront

A ribbon-cutting ceremony was held on Thursday, April 25, for China Basin Park, part of San Francisco's Mission Rock development.

May 7, 2024

Project Updates

Webcor has no shortage of experience building parks, usually as part of the property attached to a structure, like the plaza alongside the Contra Costa County Administration Building. It has been eight years since Webcor built a civic park—Chula Vista's Orange Park—but now, we have another public park to add to our portfolio.

A ribbon-cutting ceremony was held on Thursday, April 25, for China Basin Park, part of San Francisco's Mission Rock development. The event drew an impressive roster of dignitaries, from San Francisco Mayor London Breed to Allison McCovey, daughter of the legendary Giants player whose statue was reinstalled at the park's beachfront.

The five-acre waterfront park was designed to serve as the centerpiece of the Mission Rock development. It includes the Great Lawn (an acre of green grass offering panoramic views of the Bay Bridge and Oracle Park), the Lifted Grove, a dog zone, the Bay Trail for pedestrians and bikers that wraps around the entire park, Stormwater Garden (a mix of native plans beneath an elevated boardwalk), a sandlot recreational area along the shoreline, a central plaza, and the re-installation of the Willie McCovey statue that had been removed to facilitate the park's development.

Webcor Project Director Tegan Sullivan points to a variety of unique elements his team worked on over the course of the project. The project accommodates "sea level rise resiliency and adaptation features to address environmental challenges." Among those challenges was the fill upon which the parking lot had been built. Following the 1906 earthquake, debris and rubble were pushed into the San Francisco Bay, resulting in the Mission Rock neighborhood we see today. We removed heavy dirt and replaced it with lighter materials, foam, and lightweight cellular concrete, which are designed to minimize surface subsidence," Tegan explains.

At the dedication ceremony, Chris Murphy, Mission Rock Partners' director of Design and Construction, elaborated on this innovation, which speaks to the sustainable approach used throughout the development. The park was designed to be 10 percent lighter than the existing surface parking lot it replaced, he said, despite parts of the park rising as much as 16 feet in elevation. "When you're standing at the top of the Great Lawn, you're standing atop 2 feet of soil, 13 feet of lightweight geofoam, 7 feet of lightweight cellular concrete, and 2 feet of foam glass aggregate made from recycled bottles," he said. He characterized it as "a truly complex, multilayered approach which achieves load offset while creating resiliency against sea-level rise."

As Chris and other speakers made their remarks, people passed by riding bikes, jogging, pushing strollers, and walking their dogs.

The project was developed by Tishman Speyer and the San Francisco Giants.

The park spans 300,000 feet and employs a sequence of layers to create a sense of topography. These layers transform the park into terraces that offer unique gathering spaces; events like concerts are planned for the space. These horizontal layers are linked vertically through multiple carved gardens.