Atascadero City Hall

Repair & Rehabilitation

Atascadero, California

In 2003, Atascadero’s historic City Hall, built in 1918, suffered severe damage as a result of the 6.5 magnitude San Simeon earthquake that hit the region. The damage required a ten-year repair and rehabilitation effort, for which the entire community rallied its support. Working with the City, we saw this as not only an opportunity to restore the structure but equally as important, to reprogram the building; establishing it once again as the centerpiece of the community. Now completed, the lower rotunda of the restored City Hall includes a gracious lobby, surrounded by three floors of offices; with historical details meticulously restored throughout. City Council chambers occupy the upper rotunda. In addition, a small historical museum was created, open to the public, reinforcing the building’s traditional connection with the town. The City Hall is on the National Register of Historic Places and is a California Registered Historical Landmark.

Project Data

58,000 sf

Program & Highlights

Double rotunda
Historical museum
City Council chambers


2014 Building Design & Construction Platinum Reconstruction Award

2014 California Preservation Foundation Preservation Design Award

2014 American Public Works Association, Central Coast Chapter Project of the Year

2014 ENR California’s Best Projects

Martha McDonald, “A City’s Centerpiece,” Traditional Building, April 2015

Julie s. Higginbottom, “California Comeback,” Building Design+Construction, August 2014

Tonya Strickland, “Atascadero prepares to move city offices back into rotunda building,” The Tribune, July 24, 2013

Victoria Johnson, “Atascadero’s city hall hosts its first grand opening,, San Luis Obispo, August 5, 2013

Heather Young, “City hall restoration,” Atascadero News, August 11, 2010

Tonya Strickland, “The Rotunda’s Revival,” The Tribune, August 10, 2010

Anne Marie Conejo, “Rotunda Awaits Fixes,” The Tribune, November 18, 2008


Structural Engineer: Nabih Youssef & Associates
MEP, Data & Telecommunications: Davidovich & Associates
General Contractor: Diani Building Corp.
Construction Management: Bernards
Lighting: Horton Lees Brogden Lighting Design, Inc.
Acoustics: Rothermel & Associates, LLC
Materials Conservation: Wiss Janney Elstner Associates, Inc.
Landscape Architect: RRM Design Group
Photographer: Tim Griffith

“Now that our City Hall Building has been so lovingly and really magnificently rehabilitated, our downtown center is truly beautiful once again, drawing residents and visitors to its heart. . . The rehabilitation brought back the symbolic heart and soul of Atascadero, giving us the amazing opportunity to reopen the building as part of the City’s centennial celebration . . .”
— Linda Hendy, President, CEO, Atascadero Chamber of Commerce

Atascadero City Hall, ca 1920, when it served as headquarters for the Atascadero Colony
Damage resulting from the 2003 San Simeon earthquake