AVA 55 Ninth

AVA 55 Ninth is located across from the new Twitter Headquarters in the Mid-Market Street redevelopment corridor in downtown San Francisco. Developer Avalon Bay envisioned a new building that would appeal to the younger, tech-savvy generation of workers flooding the revitalized Civic Center area.


Avalon Bay Communities


San Francisco, CA

SCB designed 55 Ninth to speak to the sensibilities and needs of this new type of resident—without sacrificing a conscientious response to the building’s context.



273 Apartments

17 Floors


2 Below Grade Parking Levels


2014 NAHB Pillars of the Industry Award – Best High Rise Apartment

2014 NAHB Best in American Living Award, Platinum

The design emphasizes finishes of exposed board-formed concrete and ecologically sensitive and re-used materials and furnishings throughout, from the lobby to the unit interiors. A generous, South-facing outdoor amenity deck serves as one of many social focal points for this generation of community-driven residents, providing exterior kitchens and lounge spaces, table tennis, and a movie screen with ample seating in a lushly landscaped setting. Three maker labs on the building’s north side offer furnished workshop spaces—a unique feature that provides DIY residents with a coveted amenity often lacking in the urban environment: garage space.

Meanwhile, the expression of the exterior façade acts as a bridge in scale, color, and materiality between the buildings flanking the project: a monolithic twenty-story office building with dark ribbon windows to the north and a finely-detailed brick and terra cotta building from the 1920s to the south. AVA 55 Ninth takes its color cues from each of these, and then gradually steps its scale from a large, glass cubist expression against the northern property down to an intricate, highly textured wall in warm hues as a gesture to its more delicate southern neighbor.