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The Encinal Tower is a skyscraper proposed for construction in Downtown Oaklandmarker, Californiamarker. The mixed-use tower is planned to rise and contain 56 floor for office and residential use. The current project design consists of a glass and X-bracing-covered cylindrical building with one side that resembles a roll of fabric unraveling. If built, the skyscraper would be the tallest building in Oakland and third-tallest in the Bay Areamarker after 555 California Streetmarker and the Transamerica Pyramidmarker, both located in San Franciscomarker. The project has undergone several design and name changes since it was first proposed in 2006.

Description

The project is located in Downtown Oaklandmarker a few blocks away from Lake Merrittmarker and right next to the 19th Street BART stationmarker. The site is bounded by Broadway, Franklin, 19th, and 20th streets. Several lowrise buildings and a parking lot currently inhabit the proposed building site. The developers of the project are Chengben (Peter) Wang, and Encinal; the architect is Skidmore, Owings & Merrill.

The building has the shape of an oval cylinder with one side that curves outward and downward. Its exterior skin consists of glass and X-braces with a horizontal line passing through the center of the X. The large tower is planned to stand tall with 56 floors and contain of floor space. The majority ( ) of this space would consist of offices, would go to parking, and for retail space. The top 22 floors of the skyscraper will house 220 residential units or ten units per floor. There will be a large, lobby housing artwork at the base of the building. The building's floorplates will average in size. Wang intends on making this building a landmark for the city of Oakland.

At in height, the proposed skyscraper would far surpass the -tall Ordway Buildingmarker as the tallest building in Oakland and tallest in the Bay Area outside San Francisco. The building would come in as the third-tallest in the Bay Area overall, after the -tall 555 California Street and the -tall Transamerica Pyramid.

History

The developers, Wang and Encinal, first proposed this project as 1930 Broadway sometime in 2006 as the new headquarters of University of California system. He came up with three different designs for the all-office building, ranging from 44 floors - to 63 floors - . However, the proposal changed into a mixed-use building after the University of California dropped out on the project. The new design consisted of a (the 63rd-floor was at above street level) skyscraper containing 1,007 parking spaces in an 11-story garage, of office space on 48 floors, of retail / lobby space, a 150-room hotel, and a direct connection the 19th Street BART station. The original project sechedule called for a construction groundbreaking in 2007 and completion of the skyscraper in 2009.

In mid-2007, the name of the project changed to 1938 Broadway and the building was scaled down to with 59 floors. The design of the building had of gross space, with of office space on 45 floors, a 12 story, 1,019 parking space garage with an area of , and a 116-room hotel taking up of space. The parking garage, hotel, and office levels took up a total of 58 floors; the 59th floor was a mechanical floor at above street level. The roof (level 60) was at en elevation of relative to the street. A -tall roof screen located on level 60 pushed the total building height to . The revision also had two basement levels that connected the building to the 19th Street BART station. Once again, the developer submitted other designs for the project, including a 44-45 story office / residential building and one that had offices, residential units, and a hotel.

However, sometime in 2007 or 2008, Wang withdrew the proposal as he wasn't pleased with the various designs of the building. Encinal later came back and submitted another (the current) proposal in July 2008. The name of the project also changed; it is now referred to as Encinal Tower instead of its address 1938 Broadway.

Notes

A. This assumes that no taller projects in San Francisco are completed before the Encinal Tower. Such examples include the 181 Fremont Street, and the Transbay Terminal & Towermarker.


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