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The Best New Buildings of the Decade: The Ones That Didn't Make It

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Yesterday we brought you Curbed's Best Buildings of the Decade, a meandering list of 10 that represented, each in some way, the city's awesomest new buildings. But there's more fun, yet! Here now in no particular order are the runners up that, for all intents and purposes, should have made it onto the list — if only the number 10 could somehow accommodate five more.


AT&T Park, by Populous (formerly HOK Sport)
There, we said it. The constantly renamed baseball stadium didn't get very much love from our luminary pals — and maybe for good reason! — but it's become a legitimate anchor to the city, particularly to neighborhoods like young upstart Mission Bay. The stadium's popularity on game nights has besieged the poor N-Judah, and it's also brought the culture scene to the baseball capped masses with Opera in the Park. To say nothing of the garlic fries.

Plaza Apartments, by Leddy Maytum Stacy Architects and Paulett Taggart
Troubled 6th Street might be thankful for the breath of fresh air this building brings to the neighborhood. The development replaced a grody SRO, and was one of the city's first environmentally conscious affordable housing projects— like David Baker's Curran House in our first list, it says the poors should be able to live with light and air too.

Millennium Tower, by Handel Architects
Tall, dark, and handsome, with a dash of daring! Like 560 Mission, the Millennium somehow looks interesting, good even, for a glassy high-rise. Visitors can nosh in Michael Mina's RN74, and residents can do the same in their own exclusive enclave. In a way, the luxury tower's even a bit before it's time. When the day comes that the neighboring Transbay Terminal has been replaced by the Transbay Transit Center, complete with high-speed rail and gratuitous funicular, the Millennium will have really come into its own.

1234 Howard, by Stanley Saitowitz | Natoma Architects
If any architect has capitalized on the hotbed of architectural experimentation in SoMa, it's Stanley Saitowitz. His firm is known, if anything, for the ultracontemporary boxes they plant all over SoMa— and yet 1234 Howard still stands above them as one of the best in recent years. The louvers (he's a fan of those too) control the flow of light into the homes inside, and the glass catwalk sidings help bring light right down into the center of the building— no easy feat for multifamily homes in a dense area.

Contemporary Jewish Museum, by Daniel Libeskind
Is Daniel Libeskind the least loved of San Francisco's latest batch of visiting starchitects? Nevermind. The power station turned Jewish museum cuts a great contrast with the Catholic church next door, and is no doubt another foot forward in bringing actual human beings into the surrounding plaza. The building's meteor cube is bold, sure, but sometimes bold is beautiful.