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Office of the Chief Medical Examiner

Construction began in November 2015 for the 22-month Office of the Chief Medical Examiner project. The Medical Examiner and staff of 35 -- currently at the Hall of Justice at 850 Bryant – will move in to the new building in the fall of 2017.
 
The $65 million project is funded by the voter-approved 2014 Earthquake Safety and Emergency Response Bond.

The Medical Examiner coordinates the investigation and certification of deaths in San Francisco. Medical examiners investigate and sign death certificates for all manners of deaths (homicide, suicide, accident) and deaths of persons who may be unidentified. Services provided by the Office of the Chief Medical Examiner are essential and critical for the community. The duties of the office are essential to the fire, safety and first responder services- as well as the criminal justice system in the City. More than 1,200 deaths are investigated each year.
 
The Hall of Justice at 850 Bryant is over 50 years old and seismically deficient. The current medical examiner facility is undersized and has numerous deficiencies, and faces the risk of losing accreditation. 
 
The new facility ensures that the work of the Office of the Chief Medical Examiner meets needed national accreditation, which is directly related to providing reliable results of their investigations, providing a modern facility to accommodate evolving practices and technologies and expediting City recovery after a major disaster. The new and improved Office of the Chief Medical Examiner at a new location, 1 Newhall Street in the Bayview, provides a seismically safe structure, professional work environments and the facility necessary for city-wide medical examiner emergency response capabilities.
 
The renovated facility will house each of the Office of the Chief Medical Examiner’s programmatic and first responder functions consisting of: a medical complex, forensics laboratory, administration, field investigations, building support, and public functions.
 
The Office of the Chief Medical Examiner will be equipped to provide continuous and reliable service with enhanced capacity to efficiently process caseloads and produce timely results for victims of crimes, for the judicial system, and for medical authorities in case of epidemics. The new office will have autopsy, laboratory and support areas; office and office support areas. It will be a two-story building with 46,000 square feet of space, room 50 employees and parking for eight city vehicles, six visitor vehicles and 10 secured first responder vehicles.
 
The original building on the site at 1 Newhall St. was built in 1984. The City purchased the property and the building, which is empty and will be demolished. The general contractor for the project is Clark Construction. The architect is KMD Architects.
 
 
What improvements will be made to the medical examiner facilities?

ESER 2014 will build an improved Office of the Chief Medical Examiner at a new location, 1 Newhall Street, providing a seismically safe structure, professional work environments, and the facility necessary for city-wide medical examiner emergency response capabilities.

The project is designed in accordance with the Essential Services Building Seismic Safety Act to resist the forces of a major earthquake and remain appropriately operational. It will include provisions for adequate drinking and fire suppression water, power, and sanitary sewage storage throughout the period of time during which the building may have to operate off the grid.

The medical examiner facilities are designed for the preservation of evidence and proper storage facilities following a major catastrophe. The newly renovated facility will house each of the Office of the Chief Medical Examiner’s programmatic and first responder functions consisting of: a medical complex, forensics laboratory, administration, field investigations, building support, and public functions.
Major Buildings
Public Safety
STATUS In Progress
Location
1 Newhall Street
District
Start Date November 2015
Completion Date October 2017
Budget
$65 million
Client
San Francisco Police Department
Project Manager
​M. Magdalena Ryor, PhD, LEED AP BD+C, PMP, CCM
Phone
(415) 557-4659