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Lighthouse for the Blind

Photographer: Jasper Sanidad

A 45,000-square-foot facility occupies three floors of a high rise in downtown San Francisco. Staff offices, a boardroom, and a small conference room occupy the ninth floor. The 10th floor holds the main teaching spaces and features a large multi-purpose room as well as a 12-station training kitchen, tech labs, a retail store, a low-vision optometry clinic, and music and videoconferencing rooms. Eleven dorm rooms (for short-term stays by students in immersive programs), a community kitchen and laundry, a maker’s workshop, fitness center, and a STEM classroom occupy the 11th floor. A central stair connects the three levels and ties the entire space together.

Acoustics were modeled through digital animation to find a sound level that is warm but not overbearing, where cane taps and footfalls— human or canine —enliven the space. The team clad many of the public areas’ walls and ceilings in slatted hemlock (installed by California Drywall), chosen for its acoustical and visual warmth.

Completion Year



45,000 square feet

Project Type

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Lighthouse for the Blind
San Francisco
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