Kaiser CenterEdit profile
Kaiser Center, (also called the Kaiser Building) is an office building located at 300 Lakeside Drive, adjacent to Lake Merritt, in downtown Oakland, California . The property is bounded by Lakeside Drive (which terminates and joins Harrison Street at the site), 20th Street, 21st Street, and Webster Street. The building has 28 stories and was completed in 1960 . At that time, it was Oakland's tallest building, as well as the largest office tower west of the Rocky Mountains. . A three-story office/retail building adjacent to the main tower was completed in 1963. Kaiser Center was the headquarters of Kaiser Industries, a large Fortune 500 conglomerate headed by industrialist Henry J. Kaiser. Its Roof Garden, designed by San Francisco-based landscape architecture firm Theodore Osmundson & Associates, was the first roof garden built in the United States after World War II. After the main building’s completion, Kaiser occupied a penthouse apartment on the 28th floor as his personal residence for several years, and reportedly commissioned the roof garden so as not to look down on a bare concrete roof. The building is currently home to the headquarters of the Bay Area Rapid Transit District (BART), which recently relocated from its former (1972) administration building atop the Lake Merritt station, due to earthquake concerns. The architectural firm of this building was Welton Becket & Associates of Los Angeles.