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Mayor Lee Signs Legislation to Fund War Memorial Seismic Upgrades & Improvements Project

Plan Will Create Jobs, Make Historic San Francisco Building Seismically Safe & Accessible

Mayor Edwin M. Lee today signed legislation to fund War Memorial Veterans Building infrastructure improvements after the Board of Supervisors unanimously approved it on July 31, 2012. Funding will allow the City to invest in infrastructure and creates jobs for residents.

“The War Memorial Veterans Building is one of our most treasured historic buildings and we can now continue to tell the stories of our nation’s heroes and the people of our City for generations to come,” said Mayor Lee. “This legislation makes seismic upgrades, increased safety and greater accessibility possible while fulfilling my top priority of putting San Franciscans back to work.”

The project includes seismic upgrades and earthquake damage repair, improvements to preserve building facilities, accessibility upgrades and energy efficiency upgrades. The Department of Public Works will manage the project, including providing architectural services.

“I’m proud to have co-sponsored this legislation which protects a valuable San Francisco landmark and treasure,” said Board of Supervisors President David Chiu. “Now, we can move forward on these improvements to make this important building safer and more accessible to everyone.”

The ordinance fully funds the project by appropriating $155 million of the total $170 million cost of the project through Certificates of Participation and is anticipated to generate more than 600 jobs.

“This legislation is great news for this cornerstone of our historic Civic Center and for all San Franciscans,” said President of the War Memorial Board of Trustees Charlotte Mailliard Shultz. “In addition to its longstanding tradition of paying tribute to our nation’s veterans and its significance as the place where the United Nations Charter was signed, the War Memorial Veterans Building is host to some of San Francisco’s most esteemed performances, concerts and celebrations, and I’m thrilled this legacy will be preserved and continued.”

Completed in 1932, the Veterans Building is a City Landmark and a California State Historical Landmark. The site houses more than 450 meetings and 500 performances and events annually in addition to housing offices of the Department of the War Memorial, the San Francisco Posts of the American Legion, the City’s Law Library and the City’s Arts Commission.

The project will be complete in mid-2015.