San Francisco (Earth)
|Coordinates: 37°46′39″N 122°24′59″W / 37.77750°N 122.41639°W|
St. Francis of Assisi
|• Type||Strong mayor–council|
|• Body||Board of Supervisors|
|• Mayor||London Breed (D)|
| • |
MSA—$668.7 billion (4th)CSA—$1.251 trillion (3rd)
San Francisco (
San Francisco was founded on June 29, 1776, when
San Francisco and the surrounding
One of the top tourist destinations in the United States, San Francisco is known for its steep rolling
3000 BC–1845 AD: Early history and rule by Spain and Mexico
The earliest archaeological evidence of human habitation of the territory of the city of San Francisco dates to 3000 BC. The Yelamu group of the Ohlone people resided in a few small villages when an overland Spanish exploration party (led by Don Gaspar de Portolá) arrived on November 2, 1769, the first documented European visit to San Francisco Bay.
The first European maritime presence occurred on August 5, 1775, when the Spanish
In 1821, the Presidio and the Mission were
1846–1905: Population growth and American acquisition
Yerba Buena began to attract American and European settlers; an 1842 census listed 21 residents (11%) born in the United States or Europe, as well as one Filipino merchant. Commodore John D. Sloat claimed California for the United States on July 7, 1846, during the Mexican–American War, and Captain John B. Montgomery arrived to claim Yerba Buena two days later. Yerba Buena was renamed San Francisco on January 30 of the next year, and Mexico officially ceded the territory to the United States at the end of the war in 1848. Despite its attractive location as a port and naval base, San Francisco was still a small settlement with inhospitable geography. Its 1847 population was said to be 459.
The California Gold Rush brought a flood of treasure seekers (known as "forty-niners", as in "1849"). With their sourdough bread in tow, prospectors accumulated in San Francisco over rival Benicia, raising the population from 1,000 in 1848 to 25,000 by December 1849. The promise of wealth was so strong that crews on arriving vessels deserted and rushed off to the gold fields, leaving behind a forest of masts in San Francisco harbor. Some of these approximately 500 abandoned ships were used at times as storeships, saloons, and hotels; many were left to rot, and some were sunk to establish title to the underwater lot. By 1851, the harbor was extended out into the bay by wharves while buildings were erected on piles among the ships. By 1870, Yerba Buena Cove had been filled to create new land. Buried ships are occasionally exposed when foundations are dug for new buildings.
California was quickly
Entrepreneurs sought to capitalize on the wealth generated by the Gold Rush. Silver discoveries, including the
1906–1940: San Francisco earthquake and reconstruction
At 5:12 am on April 18, 1906, a major
Rebuilding was rapid and performed on a grand scale. Rejecting calls to completely remake the street grid, San Franciscans opted for speed.
During this period, San Francisco built some of its most important infrastructure. Civil Engineer
In ensuing years, the city solidified its standing as a financial capital; in the wake of the
1941–present: World War II and urbanization
Urban planning projects in the 1950s and 1960s involved widespread destruction and redevelopment of west-side neighborhoods and the construction of new
Over this period, San Francisco became a magnet for America's
Bank of America completed 555 California Street in 1969 and the Transamerica Pyramid was completed in 1972, igniting a wave of "Manhattanization" that lasted until the late 1980s, a period of extensive high-rise development downtown. The 1980s also saw a dramatic increase in the number of homeless people in the city, an issue that remains today, despite many attempts to address it. The 1989 Loma Prieta earthquake caused destruction and loss of life throughout the Bay Area. In San Francisco, the quake severely damaged structures in the Marina and South of Market districts and precipitated the demolition of the damaged Embarcadero Freeway and much of the damaged Central Freeway, allowing the city to reclaim The Embarcadero as its historic downtown waterfront and revitalizing the Hayes Valley neighborhood.
The two recent decades have seen booms driven by the internet industry. During the dot-com boom of the late 1990s, startup companies invigorated the San Francisco economy. Large numbers of entrepreneurs and computer application developers moved into the city, followed by marketing, design, and sales professionals, changing the social landscape as once poorer neighborhoods became increasingly gentrified. Demand for new housing and office space ignited a second wave of high-rise development, this time in the South of Market district. By 2000, the city's population reached new highs, surpassing the previous record set in 1950. When the bubble burst in 2001, many of these companies folded and their employees were laid off. Yet high technology and entrepreneurship remain mainstays of the San Francisco economy. By the mid-2000s (decade), the social media boom had begun, with San Francisco becoming a popular location for tech offices and a common place to live for people employed in Silicon Valley companies such as Apple and Google.
The Ferry Station Post Office Building, Armour & Co. Building, Atherton House, and YMCA Hotel are historic buildings among dozens of historical landmarks in the city according to the National Register of Historic Places listings in San Francisco.
San Francisco is located on the
There are more than 50 hills within the city limits.
San Francisco's shoreline has grown beyond its natural limits. Entire neighborhoods such as the
The historic center of San Francisco is the northeast quadrant of the city anchored by
West of downtown, across
North of the Western Addition is Pacific Heights, an affluent neighborhood that features the homes built by wealthy San Franciscans in the wake of the 1906 earthquake. Directly north of Pacific Heights facing the waterfront is the Marina, a neighborhood popular with young professionals that was largely built on reclaimed land from the Bay.
In the southeast quadrant of the city is the
The construction of the Twin Peaks Tunnel in 1918 connected southwest neighborhoods to downtown via streetcar, hastening the development of West Portal, and nearby affluent Forest Hill and St. Francis Wood. Further west, stretching all the way to the Pacific Ocean and north to Golden Gate Park lies the vast Sunset District, a large middle-class area with a predominantly Asian population.
The northwestern quadrant of the city contains the
Many piers remained derelict for years until the demolition of the
San Francisco has a
Among major U.S. cities, San Francisco has the coolest daily mean, maximum, and minimum temperatures for June, July, and August. During the summer, rising hot air in California's interior valleys creates a low-pressure area that draws winds from the North Pacific High through the Golden Gate, which creates the city's characteristic cool winds and fog. The fog is less pronounced in eastern neighborhoods and during the late summer and early fall. As a result, the year's warmest month, on average, is September, and on average, October is warmer than July, especially in daytime.
Temperatures reach or exceed 80 °F (27 °C) on an average of only 21 and 23 days a year at downtown and San Francisco International Airport (SFO), respectively. The dry period of May to October is mild to warm, with the normal monthly mean temperature peaking in September at 62.7 °F (17.1 °C). The rainy period of November to April is slightly cooler, with the normal monthly mean temperature reaching its lowest in January at 51.3 °F (10.7 °C). On average, there are 73 rainy days a year, and annual precipitation averages 23.65 inches (601 mm). Variation in precipitation from year to year is high. Above-average rain years are often associated with warm El Niño conditions in the Pacific while dry years often occur in cold water La Niña periods. In 2013 (a "La Niña" year), a record low 5.59 in (142 mm) of rainfall was recorded at downtown San Francisco, where records have been kept since 1849. Snowfall in the city is very rare, with only 10 measurable accumulations recorded since 1852, most recently in 1976 when up to 5 inches (13 cm) fell on Twin Peaks.
The highest recorded temperature at the official National Weather Service downtown observation station[c] was 106 °F (41 °C) on September 1, 2017. During that hot spell, the warmest ever night of 71 °F (22 °C) was also recorded. The lowest recorded temperature was 27 °F (−3 °C) on December 11, 1932. The National Weather Service provides a helpful visual aid graphing the information in the table below to display visually by month the annual typical temperatures, the past year's temperatures, and record temperatures.[importance?]
During a normal year between 1991 and 2020 San Francisco would record a warmest night at 64 °F (18 °C) and a coldest day at 49 °F (9 °C). The coldest daytime high since the station's opening in 1945 was recorded in December 1972 at 37 °F (3 °C).
As a coastal city, San Francisco will be heavily affected by climate change. As of 2021[update], sea levels are projected to rise by as much as 5 feet (1.5 m), resulting in periodic flooding, rising groundwater levels, and lowland floods from more severe storms.
San Francisco falls under the
|Record high °F (°C)||79
|Mean maximum °F (°C)||67.1
|Average high °F (°C)||57.8
|Daily mean °F (°C)||52.2
|Average low °F (°C)||46.6
|Mean minimum °F (°C)||40.5
|Record low °F (°C)||29
|Average precipitation inches (mm)||4.40
|Average precipitation days (≥ 0.01 in)||11.2||10.8||10.8||6.8||4.0||1.6||0.7||1.1||1.2||3.5||7.9||11.6||71.2|
|Mean monthly sunshine hours||185.9||207.7||269.1||309.3||325.1||311.4||313.3||287.4||271.4||247.1||173.4||160.6||3,061.7|
|Percent possible sunshine||61||69||73||78||74||70||70||68||73||71||57||54||69|
|Average ultraviolet index||2||3||5||7||9||10||10||9||7||5||3||2||6|
|Source 1: NOAA (sun 1961–1974)|
|Source 2: Met Office (humidity), Weather Atlas (UV)|
See or edit raw graph data.
Flora and fauna
|U.S. Decennial Census|
The 2020 United States census showed San Francisco's population to be 873,965, an increase of 8.5% from the 2010 census. With roughly one-quarter the population density of Manhattan, San Francisco is the second-most densely populated large American city, behind only New York City among cities greater than 200,000 population, and the fifth-most densely populated U.S. county, following only four of the five New York City boroughs.
San Francisco forms part of the five-county
Race, ethnicity, religion, and languages
San Francisco has a
In 2010, residents of Chinese ethnicity constituted the largest single ethnic minority group in San Francisco at 21% of the population; other large Asian groups include Filipinos (5%) and Vietnamese (2%), with Japanese, Koreans and many other Asian and Pacific Islander groups represented in the city. The population of Chinese ancestry is most heavily concentrated in Chinatown and the
The principal Hispanic groups in the city were those of Mexican (7%) and Salvadoran (2%) ancestry. The Hispanic population is most heavily concentrated in the Mission District, Tenderloin District, and Excelsior District. The city's percentage of Hispanic residents is less than half of that of the state.
Source: US Census and IPUMS USA
According to a 2018 study by the Jewish Community Federation of San Francisco, Jews make up 10% (80,000) of the city's population, making
As of 2010[update], 55% (411,728) of San Francisco residents spoke only
San Francisco has several prominent Chinese, Mexican, and Filipino neighborhoods including Chinatown and the Mission District. Research collected on the immigrant clusters in the city show that more than half of the Asian population in San Francisco is either Chinese-born (40.3%) or Philippine-born (13.1%), and of the Mexican population 21% were Mexican-born, meaning these are people who recently immigrated to the United States. Between the years of 1990 and 2000, the number of foreign-born residents increased from 33% to nearly 40%. During this same time period, the San Francisco metropolitan area received 850,000 immigrants, ranking third in the United States after Los Angeles and New York.
Education, households, and income
Of all major cities in the United States, San Francisco has the second-highest percentage of residents with a college degree, second only to Seattle. Over 44% of adults have a bachelor's or higher degree. San Francisco had the highest rate at 7,031 per square mile, or over 344,000 total graduates in the city's 46.7 square miles (121 km2).
San Francisco has the highest estimated percentage of gay and lesbian individuals of any of the 50 largest U.S. cities, at 15%. San Francisco also has the highest percentage of same-sex households of any American county, with the Bay Area having a higher concentration than any other metropolitan area.
|Income in 2011|
|Per capita income||$46,777|
|Median household income||$72,947|
|Median family income||$87,329|
San Francisco ranks third of American cities in median household income with a 2007 value of $65,519. Median family income is $81,136. An emigration of middle-class families has left the city with a lower proportion of children than any other large American city, with the dog population cited as exceeding the child population of 115,000, in 2018. The city's
There are 345,811 households in the city, out of which: 133,366 households (39%) were individuals, 109,437 (32%) were
San Francisco declared itself a sanctuary city in 1989, and city officials strengthened the stance in 2013 with its 'Due Process for All' ordinance. The law declared local authorities could not hold immigrants for immigration offenses if they had no violent felonies on their records and did not currently face charges." The city issues a Resident ID Card regardless of the applicant's immigration status.
8,035 homeless people were counted in San Francisco's 2019 point-in-time street and shelter count. This was an increase of more than 17% over the 2017 count of 6,858 people. 5,180 of the people were living unsheltered on the streets and in parks. 26% of respondents in the 2019 count identified job loss as the primary cause of their homelessness, 18% cited alcohol or drug use, and 13% cited being evicted from their residence. The city of San Francisco has been dramatically increasing its spending to service the growing population homelessness crisis: spending jumped by $241 million in 2016–17 to total $275 million, compared to a budget of just $34 million the previous year. In 2017–18 the budget for combatting homelessness stood at $305 million. In the 2019–2020 budget year, the city budgeted $368 million for homelessness services. In the proposed 2020–2021 budget the city budgeted $850 million for homelessness services.
In January 2018 a United Nations special rapporteur on homelessness, Leilani Farha, stated that she was "completely shocked" by San Francisco's homelessness crisis during a visit to the city. She compared the "deplorable conditions" of the homeless camps she witnessed on San Francisco's streets to those she had seen in Mumbai. In May 2020, San Francisco officially sanctioned homeless encampments.
|Crime rates* (2018)|
|Motor vehicle theft||222.4|
|Total property crime||2,649.2|
*Number of reported crimes per 100,000 population.
Source: FBI 2019 UCR data
In 2011, 50 murders were reported, which is 6.1 per 100,000 people. There were about 134 rapes, 3,142 robberies, and about 2,139 assaults. There were about 4,469 burglaries, 25,100 thefts, and 4,210 motor vehicle thefts. The Tenderloin area has the highest crime rate in San Francisco: 70% of the city's violent crimes, and around one-fourth of the city's murders, occur in this neighborhood. The Tenderloin also sees high rates of drug abuse, gang violence, and prostitution. Another area with high crime rates is the Bayview-Hunters Point area. In the first six months of 2015 there were 25 murders compared to 14 in the first six months of 2014. However, the murder rate is still much lower than in past decades. That rate, though, did rise again by the close of 2016. According to the San Francisco Police Department, there were 59 murders in the city in 2016, an annual total that marked a 13.5% increase in the number of homicides (52) from 2015. The city has also gained a reputation for car break-ins, with over 19,000 car break-ins occurring in 2021.
During the first half of 2018, human feces on San Francisco sidewalks were the second-most-frequent complaint of city residents, with about 65 calls per day. The city has formed a "poop patrol" to attempt to combat the problem.
In January 2022,
African-American street gangs familiar in other cities, including the
Criminal gangs with shotcallers in China, including
According to academic Rob Wilson, San Francisco is a global city, a status that pre-dated the city's popularity during the California Gold Rush. However, the COVID-19 pandemic has accelerated the exodus of business from the downtown core of San Francisco.
San Francisco has a diversified
Beginning in the 1990s, San Francisco's economy diversified away from finance and tourism towards the growing fields of high tech, biotechnology, and medical research. Technology jobs accounted for just 1 percent of San Francisco's economy in 1990, growing to 4 percent in 2010 and an estimated 8 percent by the end of 2013. San Francisco became a center of Internet start-up companies during the dot-com bubble of the 1990s and the subsequent social media boom of the late 2000s (decade). Since 2010, San Francisco proper has attracted an increasing share of venture capital investments as compared to nearby Silicon Valley, attracting 423 financings worth US$4.58 billion in 2013. In 2004, the city approved a payroll tax exemption for biotechnology companies to foster growth in the Mission Bay neighborhood, site of a second campus and hospital of the University of California, San Francisco (UCSF). Mission Bay hosts the UCSF Medical Center, the California Institute for Regenerative Medicine, California Institute for Quantitative Biosciences, and Gladstone Institutes, as well as more than 40 private-sector life sciences companies.
The top employer in the city is the city government itself, employing 5.6% (31,000+ people) of the city's workforce, followed by
Like many U.S. cities, San Francisco once had a significant manufacturing sector employing nearly 60,000 workers in 1969, but nearly all production left for cheaper locations by the 1980s. As of 2014[update], San Francisco has seen a small resurgence in manufacturing, with more than 4,000 manufacturing jobs across 500 companies, doubling since 2011. The city's largest manufacturing employer is Anchor Brewing Company, and the largest by revenue is Timbuk2.
As of the first quarter of 2022[update], the median value of homes in San Francisco County was $1,297,030. It ranked third in the US for counties with highest median home value, behind Nantucket and San Mateo.
San Francisco became a hub for technological driven economic growth during the
In the second technological boom driven by social media in the mid-2000s, San Francisco became a location for companies such as
The tech sector's dominance in the Bay Area is internationally recognized and continues to attract new businesses and young entrepreneurs from all over the globe. San Francisco is now widely considered the most important city in the world for new technology startups. A recent high of $7 billion in venture capital was invested in the region. These startup companies hire well educated individuals looking to work in the tech industry, which helps the city have a well educated citizenry. Over 50% of San Franciscans have a four-year university degree, thus the city ranks high in terms of its population's educational level.
Tourism and conventions
Tourism is one of the city's largest private-sector industries, accounting for more than one out of seven jobs in the city. The city's frequent portrayal in music, film, and popular culture has made the city and its landmarks recognizable worldwide. In 2016, it attracted the fifth-highest number of foreign tourists of any city in the United States. More than 25 million visitors arrived in San Francisco in 2016, adding US$9.96 billion to the economy. With a large hotel infrastructure and a world-class convention facility in the Moscone Center, San Francisco is a popular destination for annual conventions and conferences.
Some of the most popular tourist attractions in San Francisco noted by the Travel Channel include the
San Francisco also offers tourists cultural and unique nightlife in its neighborhoods.
The new Terminal Project at Pier 27 opened September 25, 2014, as a replacement for the old Pier 35. Itineraries from San Francisco usually include round-trip cruises to Alaska and Mexico.
A heightened interest in conventioneering in San Francisco, marked by the establishment of convention centers such as Yerba Buena, acted as a feeder into the local tourist economy and resulted in an increase in the hotel industry: "In 1959, the city had fewer than thirty-three hundred first-class hotel rooms; by 1970, the number was nine thousand; and by 1999, there were more than thirty thousand."
Arts and culture
Since the 1990s, the demand for skilled
The international character that San Francisco has enjoyed since its founding is continued today by large numbers of immigrants from Asia and Latin America. With 39% of its residents born overseas, San Francisco has numerous neighborhoods filled with businesses and civic institutions catering to new arrivals. In particular, the arrival of many ethnic Chinese, which began to accelerate in the 1970s, has complemented the long-established community historically based in Chinatown throughout the city and has transformed the annual Chinese New Year Parade into the largest event of its kind in its hemisphere.
With the arrival of the
Since 1993, the San Francisco Department of Public Health has distributed 400,000 free syringes every month aimed at reducing HIV and other health risks for drug users, as well as providing disposal sites and services.
San Francisco also has had a very active environmental community. Starting with the founding of the Sierra Club in 1892 to the establishment of the non-profit Friends of the Urban Forest in 1981, San Francisco has been at the forefront of many global discussions regarding the environment. The 1980 San Francisco Recycling Program was one of the earliest curbside recycling programs. The city's GoSolarSF incentive promotes solar installations and the San Francisco Public Utilities Commission is rolling out the CleanPowerSF program to sell electricity from local renewable sources. SF Greasecycle is a program to recycle used cooking oil for conversion to biodiesel.
The Sunset Reservoir Solar Project, completed in 2010, installed 24,000 solar panels on the roof of the reservoir. The 5-megawatt plant more than tripled the city's 2-megawatt solar generation capacity when it opened in December 2010.