The Presidio Trust Offers Mission-Driven Organizations a Unique Development Opportunity In One Of San Francisco’s Most Historic Sites


If you or someone you know is connected to a mission-driven organization seeking a special home in one of San Francisco’s most tranquil and historic locations, The Presidio Trust has a unique opportunity for you.

The agency, in partnership with the National Park Service and the Golden Gate National Parks Conservancy is responsible for managing the picturesque Presidio, the city’s central national park site, and is on the hunt for proposals from organizations to revitalize the area’s Fort Winfield Scott. The plan is to revamp the former headquarters for the defense of the Bay Area’s coastline into a “Campus for Change” that addresses significant modern-day environmental and/or social challenges.

The 30-acre cluster of historic buildings, landscapes, walking trails, and athletic fields sits atop a bluff with sweeping views of the Golden Gate Bridge, San Francisco Bay, and the city skyline. The site features one of the largest groups of historic buildings remaining to be renovated in the Presidio. Named for the most prominent U.S. Army officer of the 19th century, Fort Scott was initially established as an independent post for the Coast Artillery Corps. While located within the Presidio Army post, it functioned separately with its own commander until after World War II. Over the course of half a century, it served as headquarters for the defense of the Bay Area’s coastline, from the era of breech loaded, rifled guns to Nike missiles. Constructed between 1909 and 1912, the Fort Scott barracks feature the earliest example of the Mission Revival architectural style at the Presidio.

“Fort Winfield Scott combines the peace and quiet of a national park with immediate access to San Francisco and Silicon Valley, so it’s a unique place for one or more mission-driven organizations to tackle the environmental and social challenges of our day,” says Jean Fraser, CEO of the Presidio Trust. “We’ve long had a vision of a higher purpose for Fort Scott. We’re excited to see if there are qualified organizations out there interested in this opportunity.”

The ideal candidates for the Campus for Change are organizations (individually or in a joint venture/partnership) setting up offices or educational facilities, co-working spaces, and retreat and/or meeting space. The offering includes 280,000 square feet of space in 20 historic buildings that require rehabilitation, including the Mission Revival barracks that ring the historic parade ground. Applicants may also opt to include two additional buildings totaling 15,000 square feet of space, and new construction of up to 20,000 square feet may be considered too. There are plans for the entire area to be served by a small public transportation hub.

Costs for revitalizing the campus are estimated at $200 million, but because the buildings qualify as certified historic structures, the successful bid may be eligible for the Federal Historic Preservation Tax Incentives program. Though the Presidio Trust is seeking private funding to revitalize and operate Fort Scott, the site and structures will remain in a part of the Golden Gate National Recreation Area overseen by the Presidio Trust. Visitor access will be maintained, including to the public athletic fields, and trail connections through the site to the rest of the Presidio may be enhanced.

“This is not a traditional development opportunity,” says Josh Bagley, Director of Real Estate Development at the Presidio Trust. “In seeking proposals for a mission-driven campus, we welcome bids from foundations, nonprofits, and other organizations from around the country who can achieve the project goals and are able to provide the resources necessary to rehabilitate the site.”

Visit to learn more and submit a RFCP.


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