I have given my proxy to Sylvia Johnson and I urge everyone to do the same
. If you haven't a clue what I'm talking about, you needed either to be there or to have seen the final question period on TV.
But personally, my initial choice--and I regret saying it--is the SOM proposal. Both Lord Rogers and Mr. Pelli seem like such nice, sincere people and I'm glad I won't be the one having to say "sorry" to either of them, but I just like the SOM design best. Rogers would be second and Pelli third.
The Pelli team spent so much time talking about their park and very little about the tower so it's possible I'm under-rating it. All I can go on is the superficial appearances of the rendering we saw. But the thing is that I'm unconvinced a park, however glorious it looked, 6 stories in the air would get used all that much. If you are out walking the dog or pushing that baby stroller, are you going to want to take a funicular or multiple escalators way up there? How about if you just want to eat your sandwich for lunch? And, oh by the way, with a tower that's entirely office (serious political mistake IMHO--Daly has already said he wants affordable housing), where are those people with strollers expected to come from? The Millenium Tower?
No, I think this is a spot for a truly grand urban BUILDING rather than a park to match Yerba Buena just up the street and by that criteria, SOM wins. I sort of cringed when they analogized the Eiffel Tower although the blood line is obvious. However some of the ground level renderings reminded me more of the entrance to Babylon at its height. Breathtaking. And I like the way the architecture of the terminal flows into that of the tower with the same "tree" forms on both.
The Rogers design struck me as functional; efficient; solid in a bold way. For all those reasons--and that it may ultimately be the most "sustainable" and flexible--it may very well win. And I like it a lot. But it isn't my first choice.