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1960 Golden Gate Ave

This project traversed two separate clients and 7 years of transformation. When our clients for this project initially came to us, they were pregnant with their first child. The house had only 1 habitable level and only had 1 bedroom, so they urgently needed more space and wanted to add a new story to their home. Unfortunately, in San Francisco, an addition of any kind, especially a vertical addition like that, takes 2-5 years just to go through the permitting process.

To solve their immediate problem, we got creative, dividing this project into 2 phases. The first phase included excavating the basement crawl space behind the garage to create 2 bedrooms, two bathrooms, and a small family room. Because the work was all within the building envelope, we were able to get this approved over-the counter, and they were able to start work right away. And because we kept their current kitchen and main floor bathroom intact, we were able to keep the costs down.


To be sure our designs for Phase 1 wouldn’t rule out any future options for a Phase 2 vertical addition, we provided designs for the entire project and engineered all the new basement work in anticipation of the future third story.

5 years later, they sold the property to a second client, a young family with two small children, who picked up where they left off and finalized permitting and construction of the vertical addition. This is now a showpiece of a home with 3 stories of living including 4 bedrooms, 3 bathrooms and a spectacular roof deck.

The finish project turned out beautifully with whimsical, colorful touches added by their interior designer throughout the house. See all the photos in this House Beautiful Feature article.



Single Family


San Francisco 


2015 - 2022


Engineering Sketch

Structural Engineer

Sung Engineering


Image by Evgeniy Alyoshin


Doherty Restoration


Image by Andrew Hutchings



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