Photo: Liz Hafalia / The Chronicle
Written by: John King / The Chronicle
Strange as this might sound, convention centers have a lot in common with hospitals. They’re designed from the inside out, driven by the quest for efficient functionality above all else.
So when a convention facility also tries to be urbane, as with San Francisco’s Moscone Center, you can’t help but applaud — even when the strain of being neighborly yet enormous is hard to miss.
The latest expansion of the 38-year-old facility extends 565 feet along Howard Street between Third and Fourth streets, yet frames three tall stories of glass with a delicate filigree of perforated metal. The expansion swallowed up drop-off zones but adds rarely used benches along the sidewalk. Elevator shafts were replaced by a landscaped public plaza.