SAN FRANCISCO, Nov. 22, 2016 /PRNewswire/ -- Efforts to restore the 1874 Old U.S. Mint and transform the historic treasure into a center of history, culture, and learning received a major boost today. The State of California awarded a $1 million grant to the California Historical Society, in partnership with the City and County of San Francisco, to explore, plan and conduct the required studies to help advance the next phase of development and implementation of the Old Mint Restoration Project.
The announcement was made at the 1874 Old U.S. Mint where community leaders and supporters of the project toured the iconic building and celebrated the beginning of a new chapter in the restoration plans, pledging their support for ensuring success in the future. The $1 million grant, approved by the California Legislature and Governor as part of the 2017 budget, was supported through the work of many partners and supporters, including State Senator Mark Leno (D- San Francisco), Assemblymember Phil Ting (D- San Francisco) and San Francisco Mayor Ed Lee. "Today marks an important milestone for helping restore the Old Mint," said Senator Leno. "This $1 million grant provides important resources to ensure a successful venture that will benefit our entire state. The Old Mint is a true landmark that reflects California's glorious past while envisioning its brilliant future." "Transforming the Mint is a wonderful opportunity to ensure that the lessons of history help us fight for a just future for everyone," said Assemblymember Phil Ting. "Our values of inclusion and innovation in San Francisco ultimately prevail in California and our nation. I am excited to see how this facility will remind us of that." In March 2016, after a competitive RFP process administered through the Office of Economic and Workforce Development, the City and County of San Francisco announced the selection of the California Historical Society, the State's official historic society, as its lead cultural partner on the restoration project. "The Old U.S. Mint represents an important piece of San Francisco's rich history," said Mayor Ed Lee. "This grant provides critical funding that will bring us closer to restoring this iconic landmark into a center for culture and learning for all San Franciscans and visitors to our great city." The grant will be administered by the California State Library through the California Historical Society in partnership with the San Francisco Office of Economic and Workforce Development. The funding allows the California Historical Society to continue collaborating with the City of San Francisco, the State Library, and other partners to fully explore and design the organizations' new home in the Old U.S. Mint and building an important cultural, learning and historical center within its granite walls and foundation. "The California Historical Society is deeply honored to continue our work with the City of San Francisco, the State of California and so many cultural partners, towards the rehabilitation of this remarkable community asset," said Dr. Anthea Hartig, Executive Director and CEO. "We are thrilled to receive this generous grant and embrace the prospect of helping to transform this historic building into a center of culture and learning for the people of San Francisco, for everyone in the Golden State, the nation, and the world." The California Historical Society was selected as the lead partner with the City for the restoration of the Old Mint through a Request for Proposal process. CHS has already performed initial feasibility studies and the new funding marks an important milestone in helping advance the next phase of development strategy that will include conducting a capital campaign feasibility study, developing a full business and financial plan, market study and revenue analysis, and designing of a Community Cultural Commons among other priorities. Through an agreement with the City and CHS, the work will be conducted over the next two years with the result being a full reuse and rehabilitation proposal of the Old Mint that will be submitted to City policy-makers for review and approval, as needed.