1960 Mandela – American Steel

Oakland, California, USA


1960 Mandela Formerly American Steel, has had a long history in the city of Oakland. It has been a source of employment, a resource for pioneering artists, and now is becoming a transformation space for art, innovation, and community, continuing its legacy.

Adaptive Re-Use. JRDV has collaborated with 11 West to create a vision plan for the adaptive re-use of the iconic American Steel and Pacific Pipe blocks. These incredible industrial assets are located in the center of the historic West Oakland neighborhood. They are legacy assets that represent an important part of Oakland’s history as an industrial manufacturing city. Today the renovation and adaptive re-use of these important structures are leading a visionary approach to accelerate Oakland’s re-emergence as a city at the center of the creative maker economy.

The American Steel vision plan is designed to intentionally support a more diverse and sustainable local economy in Oakland, where companies who design and manufacture products locally thrive, in turn, creating quality jobs for people from all walks of life and contributing to the overall economic and social vibrancy of Oakland.

The Strategic Plan – focused on creating a “flexible-futures” strategy, which will allow the buildings to adapt to the changing economic dynamic of West Oakland over time. The goal is to adapt the industrial structure to the changing needs of makers, artists, technology and other creative work businesses in West Oakland. The vision plan facilitates creative work environments that will sustain companies producing locally-made products, encourages entrepreneurship and innovation, and creates employment opportunities for a diverse local workforce.

1960 Mandela – American Steel steps into the 21st century by creating an adaptive view of the future.
The expansive site has multiple buildings with uses that will both complement and activate the site to help reach its true potential. The Poplar Building is a new co-working space that celebrates the warehouse’s aesthetic while making sure to the facility is able to accommodate technology and encourage creativity for its users. The Pacific Pipe Building will transform from a vacant hazard into a one of a kind touchstone climbing gym.

1960 Mandela, formerly American steel, is a space artists and manufacturers have known for decades because of its flexibility. The space will continue that tradition while bringing more light into a central corridor and finding positive uses for underutilized space. The site has the potential for a brewery, open space for farmers markets, and enough warehouse space for a variety and uses and tenants. 1960 Mandela is a project that will help set a precedent for responsible change in west Oakland that both serves the community as well as provides space for new economies and innovation.

JRDV Urban International
JLL Marketing