University of San Francisco Buys Historic Building in Downtown San Francisco

SAN FRANCISCO (Aug. 3, 2011)

The University of San Francisco (USF) today announced a signed agreement to purchase the historic Folger Coffee Building at 101 Howard Street, a stunning and prominently placed building in the heart of downtown San Francisco. The approximately 100,000-square-foot building, listed on the National Register of Historic Places, will serve as a downtown hub for San Francisco’s oldest university.

Founded at the corner of Fourth and Market streets in 1855, the University of San Francisco is returning to its downtown roots with this acquisition. Having a presence downtown will reinforce the university’s existing business and civic ties, and underscores USF’s commitment to engage the city on a deeper, mutually beneficial level.

“For 156 years, USF has served the educational, professional, and commercial communities of San Francisco,” said USF President Stephen A. Privett, S.J. “With the acquisition of the Folger Building, we return to where we began, in the middle of the mix of downtown San Francisco. This investment in our future extends the University’s reach from its main campus on Fulton Street into one of the city’s most vibrant districts, providing us with an ideally located center for ongoing contributions and outreach.”

By relocating some of the University’s academic programming, USF can provide new experiences for a variety of students and tailor educational opportunities to meet the changing needs of the City. This downtown presence will augment the rigorous academic experiences offered on USF’s main campus.

Updated information about the University’s offerings at the 101 Howard building will be announced as plans for the site are finalized. USF is in the process of deciding what academic programs, administrative units, and educational offerings make the most sense to be based downtown. Tenants with current lease agreements will continue to occupy the space.

About the University of San Francisco

Established in 1855, USF is San Francisco’s oldest university and is consistently ranked as one of the most ethnically diverse universities in the country. The University of San Francisco is committed to being a premier Jesuit Catholic, urban university with a global perspective that educates leaders who will fashion a more humane and just world. With nearly 9,600 students enrolled both on- and off-campus, the university offers undergraduate, graduate, and professional students the knowledge and skills needed to succeed as persons and professionals, and the values and sensitivity necessary to be men and women for others. For more information about the University of San Francisco, please visit

For more information, or to schedule an interview about USF’s presence in downtown San Francisco, please contact Anne-Marie Devine (415) 422-2697 or