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When the Architecture + the City festival began in 2003, it included many of the elements most beloved by today’s audiences: film screenings, architectural tours, exhibitions, lectures, and, of course, San Francisco Living: Home Tours. Over the years, we have worked to enrich these core events to people from all walks of life.  We collaborate with design and community partners as well as firms and organizations to further creative ideas and advance the conversation surrounding our local built environment. Throughout all programs, we celebrate built and design accomplishments and work together towards building a more sustainable future. Through competitions, charrettes, exhibitions, and program partnerships we work to bring together leading minds from around the world to share and exchange ideas, as well as promote the innovation and forward thinking that defines San Francisco.  In our 14 years, perhaps what is most exciting to us is the number of other cities who have been inspired to launch festivals of their own in the last decade, including Sacramento, New York, Seattle, and Portland. We are also honored and grateful to see our participation numbers grow each year. Generating public dialogue about architecture has always been at the heart of this festival and we are honored to see similar initiatives engaging communities across the country. 

Presented by AIA San Francisco and the Center for Architecture + Design

Artwork designed by Jennifer Clifford


This year, the Architecture + the City festival theme, “Secret City” explores and reveals the many layers of historic San Francisco and how architecture and design play a key role in the ever-changing urban landscape. San Francisco is filled with many people on a daily basis—locals, residents, tourists, commuters, and homeless—each having their own perspective on San Francisco’s current state. Each group of people intimately understand certain parts of the city, while other parts of the city remain hidden or tucked away from the casual observer—the Secret City. Programs will create opportunities to help impart and understand the city’s past and how we can seamlessly connect the present urban community to empower a more deliberate, livable future.











Past Festivals
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