San Francisco’s Waterfront Transformation

Golden Gate - San Francisco

Event details:

11:45am PDT on Tuesday, April 16, 2024
1:45pm PDT on Tuesday, April 16, 2024
Wells Fargo Penthouse
420 Montgomery Street
San Francisco , CA ,

Members & Guests: $65 each

Public Sector Members: $55 each*

Late Registration (after Apr. 12): $75 each


To pay by check or Zelle, please contact Lori Horan ( to RSVP. Please mail your check written to "LAI Golden Gate" to Lori Horan at PO Box 1471, Galt, CA 95632.

*Public sector members must pay by Zelle (recipient name: to receive the discount.

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This event is open to All LAI members globally and non-members.
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Cancellation/ Refund/ No-Show Policy

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San Francisco's waterfront has seen numerous major transformations over its history. Driven by the existential crises of climate change and rising sea levels, the City has a need — and an opportunity — to transform its waterfront once again. Like many cities globally, San Francisco grapples with the present-day challenges of coastal flooding and seismic vulnerability. These threats are poised to intensify over time, putting structures, small enterprises, employment, transportation, and essential services at risk. This program will delve into the intricacies of the Port of San Francisco’s recently released Waterfront Resilience Program (WRP), a proactive initiative designed to enhance and revitalize the waterfront while concurrently mitigating the hazards of flooding and earthquakes through extensive coastal adaptations. With the recent release of The Draft Plan, a co-sponsored effort with the U.S. Army Corps of Engineers, San Francisco stands at a formative moment in deciding solutions to these existential issues. The discussion will shed light on the challenges and opportunities inherent in the WRP, showcasing the adaptive strategies under consideration by the WRP team and external stakeholders. Furthermore, the session will explore the amalgamation of diverse approaches necessary to address the varied vulnerabilities, topographical nuances, and historical development intricacies present along the San Francisco waterfront. 



Brad Benson, Program Manager, Port of San Francisco

Brad Benson joined the Port of San Francisco in 2005 and serves as the Waterfront Resilience Program Director. He currently oversees the Waterfront Resilience Program efforts, including the up to $5 billion Embarcadero Seawall Program and the United States Army Corps of Engineers/Port of San Francisco Flood Study. Previously, as Director of Special Projects, Brad developed the state legislation that guides two of the Port’s largest development projects at Pier 70 and Mission Rock. Additionally, he developed the state and local legislation that allows the Port to form infrastructure financing districts on Port property. He collaborated in the preparation of the Port’s Ten-Year Capital Plan to ensure an economically stable Port and he managed the Port’s role in the Golden State Warriors Chase Center development project in the central waterfront. He also served as the Port’s Pier 70 Waterfront Site Project Director to oversee a new proposed transit oriented, Type 1 Eco-District neighborhood in the southern waterfront.


Kevin Conger, Founding Partner, CMG Landscape Architecture

Kevin Conger is a Founding Partner of CMG Landscape Architecture and is involved in many innovative public realm projects in the Bay Area including the redevelopment of Treasure Island, Bay Meadows, Moscone Center, De-Pave Park at Alameda Point, and the Port of San Francisco’s Waterfront Resilience Program. Kevin’s mantra is that all his work is part of “One Project”, which is to improve social and ecological wellbeing through artful design in our community. Kevin is a family man and surfer with his partner Nancy and young adults Ren and Claire.


Abby Granbery, Associate Urban Designer, SITELAB urban studio

Abby Granbery is an associate urban designer and planner at SITELAB urban studio. She believes that well designed public spaces, whether in the form of streets, parks, or urban plazas, have a powerful role in not only building communities but also helping to address some of the defining issues of our time. She has led the SITELAB team in developing the design alternatives and Draft Plan for the Port’s Waterfront Resilience Program. Her technical background in integrating resiliency, mobility and urban design has spanned the city design scales and subjects; from regional network plans and adaptation plans to detailed multimodal street design. She has practiced urban design in the United States, New Zealand, and Australia.