Cruise Terminal Plaza & Pier 27 Open Spaces

Northeast Wharf Plaza and Pier 27 Open Spaces

Open Space and Public Access are core components of the Port's Pier 27 efforts. This plan includes the creation of a new public space, the Cruise Terminal Plaza at Pier 27, intended to enrich the experiences of waterfront neighbors, visitors, and cruise passengers alike.

Located between the James R. Herman Cruise Terminal and the Embarcadero, this 2.5 acre plaza is arranged in several zones to allow everyday passive recreation, maximize views of the Bay, and provide activities and attractions for site visitors.

Cruise Terminal Plaza - Primary Components

  • The Waterfront Edge allows for both casual and secure pedestrian access to the Bay. On cruise days the fence along the back of the pier apron closes to prevent access from the Cruise Terminal Plaza. On non-cruise days the fence is open to allow full access to the edge. The fence is designed with vertical pickets to maximize transparency.
  • The Bay Lawn is a large grass lawn along the northeast waterfront available for unscripted public use, such as informal lunch and picnicking, frisbee, kite flying, ball playing, and many types of spontaneous recreation. The lawn is constructed in a planter on top of the pier deck and has a seatwall and stairs around its perimeter. Three large character trees are located over an area with greater soil depth that is created by the transition of the pier deck that steps from the existing loading dock to the lower circulation space.
  • The Entry Plaza serves as the fore court to the cruise terminal. It is aligned with the Embarcadero crosswalk at Lombard Street and includes space for outdoor café seating that spills out from the historic Beltline Railway building. The plaza space slopes gently up to the front door of the cruise terminal, where its generous dimensions accommodate civic gatherings and festivals, welcoming visitors to San Francisco. A hardscape paving pattern of bold swatches ties in with the cruise terminal building and pile spacing below the deck, and directs entry views to the waters edge.
  • The Embarcadero Edge is finished with stepped concrete seat terraces with vine pockets. The upper height of the edge is 42 inches at its north and south ends and bows up gently to a 60 inch height in the middle, where the height is necessary to accommodate the existing pier deck and a minimal depth soil zone for growing the lawn. The edge is stepped in sections that do not exceed 30 inches in height so as to avoid the need for a guardrail on top of the edge. The lower step of the Embarcadero edge is designed for informal seating available for people walking along the Promenade. 

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