One of the boldest initiatives in UC Hastings Law’s 142-year history is unfolding in dramatic fashion: creating a vibrant, multidisciplinary Academic Village in the heart of one of the world’s great cities.
The Academic Village will feature three new multiuse buildings and a towering historic landmark renovated for a new generation of students. But we aim higher than simply the San Francisco skyline. The Academic Village embodies UC Hastings’ compelling new strategic vision—a vision that emphasizes innovation and collaboration and accelerates the strong academic resurgence already under way.
We completed the first of our new buildings in March 2020: the Joseph W. Cotchett Law Center at 333 Golden Gate Avenue. Named for one of the college’s most distinguished and generous graduates, this new academic hub includes smart classrooms, conference rooms, offices, and shared community spaces.
Now construction shifts to 198 McAllister Street, where a new 14-story complex will replace Snodgrass Hall. Besides academic facilities, this structure—to be completed in 2023—will house more than 650 students from UC Hastings, UC San Francisco, and other partner institutions.
The Academic Village embodies UC Hastings’ compelling new strategic vision—one that emphasizes innovation and collaboration.
Next comes a total refurbishment and seismic upgrade of our iconic 28-story Tower at 100 McAllister Street, the current location of all UC Hastings student housing. Together, the renovated Tower and the new 198 McAllister Street complex will house almost 1,000 students—all without displacing any residents of the adjacent communities. Increasing affordable, onsite housing will aid recruitment and retention while expanding opportunities for students to pursue their academic, social, and professional interests on campus and off.
The final physical component of the Academic Village is the redevelopment of the properties at 201–247 Golden Gate Avenue. Under an agreement with their owner, Local 2 of the labor union Unite Here, UC Hastings will replace the existing one-and two-story buildings with a new union hall and Local 2 offices plus additional student housing and academic facilities.
The architecture of the spaces we’re creating is inspiring. Even more inspiring will be the activities inside them:
- Teaching designed to elicit the best from each student
- Hands-on lawyering through our renowned law clinics and other experiential learning programs
- Faculty scholarship that shapes opinion and policy
- Cross-disciplinary partnerships with sister University of California institutions and others
Creating the Academic Village will transform our campus. It will achieve the highest and best use of our real-estate resources. It will house five times more students than possible today. It will revitalize our neighborhood. And it will catalyze collaborative new understandings of how law, medicine, business, technology, and other fields can converge to spark insight and action.
To finish implementing the college’s Long-Range Campus Plan, adopted in December 2017, through a combination of building projects and innovative partnerships
- Provide state-of-the-art educational and research facilities
- Build well-designed, environmentally sound on-campus housing that students can afford
- Advance legal, professional, and graduate study through collaborations among educational institutions and community partners
- Address local, state, national, and global issues more effectively by boosting multidisciplinary teaching, research, and engagement
Academic Village Flythrough
UC Hastings’ two-block campus is transforming in real time. In 2020 alone, our first academic building in 40 years opened and construction began on a second, larger complex.
Academic Village Projects
Cotchett Law Center
333 Golden Gate Avenue
Completed March 2020
Academics, offices, community space, conference center
- First new academic building in 40 years
- Named for distinguished alumnus Joseph W. Cotchett ’64
- Six stories; 57,000 square feet
- Architects: Skidmore Owings & Merrill; General contractor: Clark Construction
- Designed to Platinum LEED standards
- Smart classrooms, conference center, indoor and outdoor community space
- Research and program center offices
- Home to student clinics
- Rooftop Sky Deck with views of City Hall and San Francisco
- Skybridge linking to Mary Kay Kane Hall at 200 McAllister, overlooking landscaped Quad
- Construction cost of $55 million, funded primarily via appropriation from California Legislature and augmented by philanthropy
198 McAllister Street
Sept. 2020 – June 2023
Student housing, academics, social and retail space
- Replaces Snodgrass Hall and the Hyde Street Annex
- 14 stories; 356,000 square feet
- Architects: Perkins & Will; Developer: Greystar; General contractor: Build Group
- 44,390 square feet of academic space, including classrooms, auditorium, trial and appellate courtrooms
- 657 units of housing, with efficiencies, studios, and one- and two-bedroom apartments
- Below-market-rate housing for 670 students from UC Hastings, UCSF, and other higher education institutions
- Ground-floor retail and café space
- Funded by $364 million in tax-exempt bonds, to be repaid with revenue generated through the project
100 McAllister Street
2023 - 2025
Student housing, offices
Renovation and structural upgrade
- City landmark built in 1929 as a church and hotel
- 28 stories; 252,000 square feet
- Seismic and systems upgrades; exterior historic preservation
- Below market-rate housing for some 265 students of UC Hastings and other nonprofit universities, with a mix of efficiencies, studios, and one- and two-bedroom apartments
- Iconic Sky Room, with 365-degree views of San Francisco
- Residential amenities: 24-hour security, fitness center, basketball court, lounge, laundry
- Administrative offices
- Potential to repurpose disused sanctuary; multiple options being considered if funding becomes available
201-247 Golden Gate Avenue
To be determined
UNITE HERE Local 2 union hall and offices; student housing
- Replaces four low-rise buildings owned by UNITE HERE Local 2 with multipurpose facility
- Anticipated: 14 to 16 stories, with approximately 300,000 square feet
- Replacement union hall and offices
- Teaching space, academic office, and meeting rooms
- Campus housing for students and faculty from UC Hastings and, potentially, other schools
- Entitlements scheduled to begin in 2021
- Project scoping is preliminary
- Development partners being recruited
Engineering the School’s Next Century
David Seward orchestrates campus transformation inspired by community values
Growing up in Detroit, David Seward dreamed of playing in the National Hockey League or becoming a city planner. Now, spearheading $540 million in construction and renovation projects to create the UC Hastings Academic Village, he’s resigned to the fact that a career in professional hockey is unlikely and is focusing instead on campus renewal. The law school’s chief financial officer for 25 years, Seward is instrumental in the transformation of UC Hastings’ campus and—to the full extent of his considerable ability—coaxing improvements to livability across the Tenderloin.
While cranes and steel are the most visible manifestations of the school’s building projects, the unseen foundations of the Academic Village are community connections and trust: relationships Seward has cultivated for years by participating in countless neighborhood meetings and helping create the Tenderloin Community Benefit District. He sees the Academic Village as a way to strengthen and revitalize the law school as well as the surrounding community. “This project will be a huge boon,” he says, “to our students, our alumni, our neighborhood residents and businesses.”
At a career milestone when many might consider coasting, Seward is accelerating. Why? “Because everybody deserves to live in a safe, clean neighborhood. Because, despite coronavirus, the Age of the City is still alive. We are creating an exciting urban campus in a vibrant city center, ensuring Hastings’ standing and sustainability for another century.”
Collaboration: A Way of Life
UCSF/UC Hastings Consortium exemplifies the power of multidisciplinary engagement
In hindsight, Professor Sarah Hooper ’08 seems destined to have become Executive Director of the UCSF/UC Hastings Consortium on Law, Science & Health Policy. Hooper’s father is a physician; her mother a legal aid advocate. “I’m the product of a medical and legal collaboration around the dinner table,” Hooper says.
As UC Hastings’ Academic Village rises physically, Hooper is expanding it conceptually, building on the Consortium’s signature programs. One of them, the award-winning Medical-Legal Partnership for Seniors, pairs law students with UCSF physicians whose patients face health-harming legal problems: qualifying for food stamps or Medi-Cal; resolving disputes with landlords, hospitals, or insurance providers; writing wills and powers of attorney. Another—the Optimizing Aging Center—partners law faculty with health care providers and social care agencies serving older adults in San Francisco, with the goal of improving their care through multidisciplinary training.
Hooper’s professional experience reinforces the multidisciplinary perspective she absorbed growing up. “Collaborations are powerful,” she says. “Many of the things that make people healthy—the social determinants of health—come from outside the healthcare system itself.” By combining the law school’s legal resources with UCSF’s healthcare clinics and expertise, the UCSF/UC Hastings Consortium multiplies the partner institutions’ ability to effect change. Now, with the coronavirus pandemic increasing the effects of social determinants, Hooper says the Consortium will focus even more strongly on health-equity issues.
Citizens of the Tenderloin
UC Hastings and its people partner with neighbors to create a vibrant community for all.
UC Hastings is situated in the heart of San Francisco, a brief walk from City Hall, state and federal courts, and countless restaurants, theaters, and music venues. It is also located in the Tenderloin, one of the city’s poorest and most troubled neighborhoods.
The Tenderloin is a culturally diverse community populated overwhelmingly by low-income and working-class people, including many immigrants, seniors, and people with disabilities. It is also a nexus for people struggling with mental illness, homelessness, and addiction.
Located at its current address since 1955, UC Hastings takes seriously its responsibility to the Tenderloin as an anchor institution with the capacity to deploy critically needed human capital and financial resources, working in tandem with community residents and stakeholders.
For decades, UC Hastings students, faculty, and staff members have embraced their Tenderloin citizenship, recognizing that the success of both communities is intertwined.
One of the most dramatic examples of fruitful engagement is the Tenderloin Community Benefit District (TLCBD), which works to provide a clean and safe environment through community partnerships and collaboration with city agencies, business and property owners, and residents. It was founded in 2005 as a non-profit 501c3, with UC Hastings taking a leadership role in its formation and ongoing operation. Funded through special property tax assessments voted on by a majority of property owners, the TLCBD provides services to improve the physical environment, economic development, and neighborhood pride.
At the same time that UC Hastings provides institutional support to the Tenderloin, students, faculty, and staff members contribute through diverse volunteer activities.
Led by clinic faculty dedicated to social justice, our community members perform pro bono legal work, serve on the boards of community organizations, and partner with local foundations. They help with residents’ housing concerns, tax filings and disputes, and job-related matters including unemployment insurance claims.
The school’s location is a draw for some students committed to public-interest lawyering and direct client services. “Our focus on the Tenderloin is why I came to UC Hastings,” says 3L Sean Frawley, president of Hastings’ Homeless Legal Services and former co-chair of the Tenderloin Leadership Council. Before law school, Frawley worked with unhoused people in San Diego County. “I came to law school for the sole purpose of serving the community I am in,” he says, “wherever that is.”