Tunnel Top Benches - CODAworx

Tunnel Top Benches


Location: San Francisco, CA, United States

Completion date: 2022

Artwork budget: $900,000

Project Team


Field Operations

Industry Resource

Gizmo Art Production Inc.

General Contractor





Carved benches best attraction of Presidio Tunnel Top park. Each sculpture (carved cypress and steel bench) was cut on a 5 axis CNC machine to form unique shapes and placed into custom frames to create the driftwood forms. The benches dissolve into the space and appear as something that would be found on the beach below. The three Benches are made out of reclaimed cypress lumber felled right at the Presidio site, continuing to highlight the landscape and its relationship to the native flora and fauna. The Presidio Tunnel Top park is the newest addition to the Golden Gate National Parks Conservancy, offering up a usable space with one of the more stunning views of the iconic Golden Gate bridge. Two of the benches are 52 feet long and the third is 90 feet long, sprawling along the bay to function as resting places for intrigued passers-by to sit and enjoy the sites provided by the park.


Working in this incredible setting within the National Park, it was important to not detract from or overwhelm the view. The team designed with great care and restraint, so visitors find joy and delight in experiencing the 360-degree horizon. We choreographed each pathway, furnishing and feature so that every perch feels like it’s the absolute best place to view the Bridge and Bay. The piece was greatly influenced by the community input.


Gizmo Art Production worked closely with James Corner Field Operations to transform the overall bench designs into constructible assemblies that would be carved from the 400 pieces of Monterey Cyprus that was culled from the forest that stood where the park is now. Gizmo used chainsaws and routers to create all of the individual pieces that make up the 3 unique bench designs. Gizmo also took on rolling stainless steel tubing to create the bench bases and provide a place to integrate continuous LED lighting for each bench, as well as installing the benches at the tunnel top locations.

Additional Information

Beyond the magnificent view, the Cliff-Walk is designed to be the “must-see” feature of the Tunnel Tops. It is the dramatic “edge,” the place that offers the best views and the most dramatic settings. The Cliff-Walk connects the various promontories, overlooks and viewing terraces, and at its center-point provides a ramp walk down to the Outpost and to Crissy Field. It is the promenade to see it all.