envelope A+D


San Francisco


A placeholder for more permanent development, proxy is a temporary two-block project that creates an ever-changing experience in a neighborhood in transition. Leasing empty lots from the city (formerly occupied by an elevated freeway), San Francisco architect Douglas Burnham has engineered a thriving destination with pop-up food stands, art installations, a beer garden, an area for food trucks, and event and retail spaces. Smartly revamped shipping containers compose an open frame- work that embraces the potential of impermanence, encouraging the rotation of new businesses and happenings. With plans for outdoor films and a farmers’ market, proxy has become the focal point of its community and an inspiration to cities across the U.S. looking to maximize the potential of latent real estate.

Community, Economy, Information, Pleasure
200,000 phase 1 infrastructure + 300,000 per phase
4 phases over five years
Problem - stalled development sites
Solution - curate temporary uses