Skip to main content

Union Square Alliance Announces Selection ofField Operations and Sitelab Urban Studio

Media contact:  DP&A, Inc. / David Perry / (415) 676-7007 /

Union Square Alliance Announces Selection of
Field Operations and Sitelab Urban Studio
to Create New Vision for Powell Street in Union Square 

26 January 2024 – San Francisco, CA: The Union Square Alliance ( selected a design team composed of Field Operations and Sitelab Urban Studio to reimagine the look and feel of Powell Street between Market and Geary Streets.  Field Operations is renowned as the design team behind the groundbreaking High Line in New York City and locally is known for designing the award-winning Tunnel Tops Park in the Presidio.  Sitelab Urban Studio is a highly respected San Francisco-based urban design firm responsible for several transformational local projects including the proposed mixed-use redevelopment of Stonestown Mall and the Pier 70 waterfront redevelopment.

This critical project is made possible through $4 million in funding announced last summer by Mayor London Breed and Board of Supervisors President Aaron Peskin.  

“Powell Street is the heart of one of the most important and historic districts in our City,” said San Francisco Mayor London N. Breed.  “Bringing energy and investment to this corridor will help lift up all of Union Square and I am excited to see the vision for its future.”

“Powell Street is where San Francisco’s past merges with its future, accompanied by the iconic clang of the cable car bell,” said Board of Supervisors President Aaron Peskin.  “I’m looking forward to working with this talented design team and the community to see what that future might look like- hopefully an activated and accessible public realm that welcomes visitors to this historic square and downtown destination.”

The re-envisioning of Powell is a key component of the Union Square Alliance’s Strategic Plan, released in late 2022, calling for “replacing the aged promenade to transform Powell Street into a unique cable car-centered promenade between Market and Geary or Post Streets.”

“We are so grateful to Mayor Breed and Board President Peskin for supporting this critical project,” said Marisa Rodriguez, CEO of the Union Square Alliance.  “Powell is the backbone and gateway to the Union Square District and home of the historic cable cars, a symbol of San Francisco.  A revitalized public realm on Powell Street is a key component of our strategy to attract businesses, restaurants and cultural experiences back to Union Square and downtown.”

In February the Field Operations and Sitelab team will begin working with the City, the Alliance and Union Square stakeholders to put together a vision for a beautiful, durable, and cost-effective design for the first three blocks of Powell.  We expect initial designs to be ready by the middle of this year.  

“We are delighted to be selected for the reimagining of Powell Street,” said Richard Kennedy, Partner at Field Operations. “For many, Powell Street is a gateway to San Francisco: a point of departure to connect to the City’s history, its topography and vistas, its downtown and waterfront. Our hope for the project is to leverage this powerful position to open-up, unlock and reinvigorate our collective optimism about the future of San Francisco’s downtown.”

“The reimagining of the iconic Powell Street corridor is a natural next step in our continued efforts to champion downtown revitalization in our cities,” said Laura Crescimano, Principal and Cofounder of SITELAB urban studio.  “It is an honor to be selected, in partnership with Field Operations, to not only refresh the streetscape into a destination that celebrates the area’s rich heritage and architecture,  but inspires new experiences.”  

About Union Square Alliance:
The Union Square Alliance serves members and creates a high-quality visitor experience by managing and activating public spaces, attracting new investment, and advocating for the district’s future success. Union Square is the vibrant heart of San Francisco, an international destination where visitors enjoy exceptional retail experiences, luxury hotels, world-class cultural institutions, and great public spaces found only in the City by the Bay. A lively 27-block community surrounding Union Square Park in the heart of San Francisco makes up the Union Square Alliance. It is bordered on the north by Bush Street, on the east by Kearny Street, on the south by Market Street, and on the west by Taylor Street. For more information on the Alliance, go to