The Hotel Stockton

Adaptive Reuse and Rehabilitation of the Historic Hotel Stockton

Project Outline

"The Stockton" is the original name used for the Hotel Stockton, and has been adopted for the proposed mixed use project. The building occupies the entire block between Weber Avenue on the south, Bridge Place on the North, El Dorado Street on the west, and Hunter street on the East. A complete basement underlies the building footprint with a 7 ft. extension beyond the building line and below the sidewalk at the north side of the building. The first floor plan has a rectangular shape with dimensions of approximately 100 ft. (N-S) by 310 ft. (E-W). The roof over the five-story portion of the building is hip-shaped with metal tiles and it is approximately 60ft. from the street to the mid-point of the roof. A partial penthouse floor (formerly the hotel's ballroom) and a hip-shaped tower tops the building, adding to the architectural landmark identity of the building. There is no parking presently on the site as the building occupies the full footprint of it's parcel. The building was constructed of reinforced concrete, on a concrete and wood pile foundation system, and in fact was one of the first examples in the Central Valley of that type of construction.

The project consists of rehabilitation of the entire existing 145,500 square foot six story plus basement structure. The main street level will consist of flexible commercial space adaptable for use by restaurant, retail, and related businesses. This space will be brought to an 'empty shell' condition, ready for tenant improvement design and build out work by others.

Separate Permits

Special Provisions for Shell space at the ground level northwest section

Special provisions have been made for the future tenant improvement design for the retail/restaurant space on the northwest section of the ground level, which is directly across the street from both the DeCarli waterfront square and the planned cineplex plaza. It is expected that the future tenant improvement design for this area will provide for a vertical connection by both stairs and elevator to the historic roof terrace on the third floor. This link will allow this terrace to be used for outdoor seating, dining, and entertainment functions, capitalizing on it's view of the Stockton Channel head park. The occupancy of this roof terrace will be restricted to the number of people that can be safely served by the exiting system, which includes in the present scope provisions for a future third stair shaft. As part of the present project, there is no public access proposed to the roof terrace. No use of this terrace is proposed by the apartment tenants, other than in an emergency exiting situation when it will be a part of the exit system for upper level apartment floors since two of the external metal stairs lead to this surface.

Main entry lobby and Mezzanine Access Control

The main entry of the original hotel from Weber will be reestablished to lead to the historic lobby with the restored original fireplace and two story mezzanine space. The fireplace restoration will not include provisions for burning wood, due to structural constraints. The mezzanine level will serve as the lobby and social gathering place for the building's residents. The public will have access to the ground floor lobby, but will be restricted from accessing the mezzanine and upper floors as follows:

Apartments at upper levels

Levels two through five of the building will be adapted to create 156 apartments ranging from approximately 270 to 490 square feet. The unit mix consists of 96 studio units and 60 one bedroom units. Unit sizes and configuration including inclusion of one-bedroom layouts as noted varies due to consideration of the historic and structural characteristics of the existing building. Where original historic fabric remains such as floor tile, stair railings, and bathrooms, it will be saved, refurbished and incorporated into the finished design, as applicable and feasible. Structural elements, historic fabric, and other issues may be determining elements in the final configuration of the apartments, and thus some refinement to the layouts and floor plans may be made necessary, as determined by the project Architect, during the course of construction.

Project Scope Criteria

It is the goal of the project team to balance function, regulation and resources to create the highest feasible function, appearance, and value for the community and residents.   

The project scope has been determined by :

The requirements applicable to rehabilitation/redevelopment from the various entities having jurisdiction over the permitting process, including but not limited to

        Physical limitations due to the existing structures and site.

        The financial resources available from the public/private team involved in the project

Historic Standards

This structure is listed on the National Register of Historic Places. Any part of the building is potentially considered to be 'historic fabric' and may not be removed from the site without the Architect of Record and/or Project Managers approval. The contractor is responsible to protect the historic fabric from damage or unauthorized removal, while the structure is in the custody and care of the contractor.

The entire structure will be rehabilitated in accordance with The Secretary of the Interior's Standards for the Treatment of Historic Properties, 1995. Original roofing, windows, exterior details and other historic features will be retained and repaired to provide continued service. The historic character of the property will be retained and preserved. The removal of distinctive materials or alteration of features, spaces, and spatial relationships that characterize these properties will not be undertaken. To the extent feasible, rehabilitation and/or restoration of historic fabric will occur, in particular in the following locations:

Street Level Storefronts and exterior details

Lobby and historic fireplace including mezzanine

Historic main stair

Second Level Historic floor detail

Third Level Roof terrace fountain and surfaces as applicable

Fifth Level Interior walls and interior detail and materials of original toilet rooms as indicated

Sixth Level Ballroom detailing at ceiling, trim, doors, and windows

Exterior Doors, windows, roofing tiles, and the other historic fabric that exists

Changes that create a false sense of historical development, such as adding conjectural features or elements from other historic properties, will not be undertaken. Distinctive materials, features, finishes, and construction techniques or examples of craftsmanship that characterize a property will be preserved. Deteriorated historic features will be repaired rather than replaced. Where the severity of deterioration requires replacement of a distinctive feature, the new feature will match the old in design, color, texture, and, where possible, materials. Replacement of missing features will be substantiated by documentary and physical evidence. Chemical or physical treatments, if appropriate, will be undertaken using the gentlest means possible. Treatments that cause damage to historic materials will not be used. Archeological resources will be protected and preserved in place. If such resources must be disturbed, mitigation measures will be undertaken. New additions, exterior alterations, or related new construction will not destroy historic materials, features, and spatial relationships that characterize the property. The new work will be differentiated from the old and will be compatible with the historic materials, features, size, scale and proportion, and massing to protect the integrity of the property and its environment. New work as necessary for program requirements and adjacent work on building three will be undertaken in a such a manner that, if removed in the future, the essential form and integrity of the historic properties and their environment will be unimpaired.

Resident Amenities

Each resident will have a studio or a one-bedroom apartment with a closet, kitchen and private bathroom. Cabinetry will be new, as will be interior finishes except where historic considerations direct otherwise.

The following outline some of the amenities incorporated into the design for the residents of The Stockton:

Interiors General

The Hotel Stockton's interior has been significantly altered since its opening in 1910. The annex wing of the Hotel once served as the Stockton City Hall, which remained until 1926 when a new City Hall was built. In 1960, the hotel was used as a temporary courthouse and later as offices for the County starting in 1976. It was these later office uses that most significantly altered the building. The street level commercial spaces have experienced many retail tenants since 1910. Today these spaces are vacant with the exception of a small barber shop on Weber Avenue.

Large portions of the upper floors, which were originally hotel rooms, have been previously gutted and re-partitioned for use as offices. This has resulted in the removal of dividing walls, closets, and bathrooms. Alterations to the corridor and stairway systems to serve larger open office spaces were also made.

Lighting and mechanical systems were added over time, which greatly impacted the corridor and room ceilings. Several rows of large overhead pipes link in-room heating, ventilation and air conditioning (HVAC) units. Existing lights are primarily ceiling-mounted flourescent tube fixtures that are not historic. The existing mechanical systems will be removed, and a new mechanical system will be installed. The system for the ground floor will be located in the basement level, the systems for the apartments will be located in the light wells and other areas selected for their inobtrusiveness. New reproduction light fixtures that are sensitive to the historic period will be used.

The two large light wells and adjacent windows will be retained. There will be some modifications in the lights wells necessary for exiting and mechanical; these will be handled in a way to minimize impact on the historic fabric. Some new structural elements are being added to seismically brace the building. These elements will not be visible from the exterior generally and will not disturb historic window locations. The seismic system will incorporate dampers, which will be left exposed in the shell spaces for future retail uses..

The sixth floor Ballroom was originally an assembly space for meetings and dances and other special functions. The room has high, dark-stained, exposed wood ceilings which have been concealed by a non-historic dropped T-bar ceiling. The dropped ceiling will be removed and the historic wood ceiling will be repaired. Missing light fixtures will be replicated. The Ballroom will be a meeting room for tenants.

The street level entries and retail spaces have changed a great deal over the years. The storefronts wrap all four sides of the building and the typical retail bay includes a center pair of wood doors, ceramic tile base, mosaic tile floor, large display windows, and a divided-lite transom. The majority of the storefronts have been altered with new doors, windows, signage and bases. The storefronts will be restored to their ca.1915 appearance and will be modified for accessibility for persons with disabilities as needed.

The historic lobby on the first floor of the Hotel Stockton includes coffered ceilings, mosaic tile floor, a mezzanine with wood balustrades, iron and glass chandeliers, wood paneling and a large fireplace with hand-painted tile inlay. Many of the historic features are either missing or obscured by years of remodels. The fireplace was concealed behind a false wall and was damaged by later utility installations. The south main entry was also modified, but the casework and stained glass fan-lite window are extant behind a layer of plywood and will be restored. The hotel lobby will also be substantially restored to its 1910 appearance and serve new retail and/or restaurant uses.

The basement of the Hotel Stockton has always been used as a support space for the upper floors, containing considerable storage spaces for the ground level uses, as well as most of the building's mechanical systems, boilers and other utilities. The rehabilitated basement will be used in a similar fashion, with additional potential use for parking as noted below. Space not needed for support requirements or parking will be used for general tenant storage.

In general, other interior finishes will be new of a character sympathetic to the historic setting, or refurbished if actual historic fabric remains. The completed project will generally present a appearance and functionality similar to 'as new' conditions, to the extent consistent with historic rehabilitation standards referenced above.


On project completion, the exterior will present an historically appropriate 'refurbished' appearance with materials repaired, protected, painted and refurbished to allow for effective and long service life.

The Mission Revival style exterior of the Hotel Stockton retains most of it's original character and features. Previous alterations include changes to the majority of the street level storefronts, many of which are boarded-up. The storefronts will be restored to their original configuration and appearance based on extant physical evidence, historic drawings, and photographs. New tenant signage will be required by the building management to be sensitive to the historic period.

The upper levels are mostly intact, however, the Roof Garden has been significantly altered by the addition of large pieces of mechanical equipment and two satellite dishes. The garden has also been covered-over with roll roofing and the decorative fountain is roofed-over as well. The garden and pergolas will be restored to their historic appearance and the fountain will be visually repaired. It will not be made operable under the project scope, but it could be at some future time as part of the tenant improvements for the roof terrace (by others).

The condition of the hotel's exterior is generally good, although the Weber Avenue colonnade and concrete sills and brackets have significant cracking and spalling due to water infiltration. The damaged concrete will be repaired and reinforcing steel (rebar) will be repaired and supplemented as needed. The large number of wood windows and doors appear to be in fair to good condition and will be restored for re-use, and replicated where missing.

The redwood pergolas and towers that ring the Roof Garden are in generally good condition and will be refurbished and repainted. The exterior stucco and cast concrete ornamentation are in good condition and cracks and other damage will be repaired.

The sidewalks are in fair condition and will be repaired or replaced as part of off site work, coordinated by others.


The original Stockton Hotel property historically has never had parking on this parcel. The structure is within the Downtown Central Parking District, and structure parking is available directly 'kitty corner' across Weber from the property that will be available to address the anticipated commercial public access uses and the city's residential requirements as well. Tenants of this projects, many of whom are expected to be seniors, are not expected to need or have vehicles on a one-to-one basis. It is considered important for the safety, convenience and comfort of tenants to make provisions to the extent feasible for on site parking. To this end, the project design includes provision for utilizing portions of the basement for subterranean parking, under a separate permit from the main project. This space, while a part of the original Hotel, was historically used for storage and building services. The driveway will clear the sidewalk adjacent to the building, to not interfere with pedestrian access. Exterior modification to the facade on the building's side to accommodate the vehicle door will be minimized by limiting it's size, and by keeping modifications to the building limited to portions below sidewalk level. It is anticpated that if planning for access is successful, that the basement level could accommodate parking for a limited number of vehicles - not to exceed 48 with the exact number subject to on-going refinement of the design. Access to basement parking will be controlled by a gate at street entry level, with a remote operator provided to those tenants that pass the managements screening process. The screening process will consider, among other things, the size and maneuverability of the vehicle.

Building Systems


The existing structural system is reinforced concrete. It is presently and has been performing well since the construction of the building some 90 years ago to deal with normal 'gravity loading'. Some repairs due to weather and other deterioration are required to the gravity system, but these repairs are generally localized in scope. In addition, there are some new structural elements such as a new exiting stair enclosure that will meet code structural criteria.

Lateral loads, from earthquake and wind forces, however, are not imposed on a structure on a routine basis like gravity loads, so the buildings ability to resist these lateral forces must be considered and addressed as part of a comprehensive rehabilitation.  An innovative structural upgrade using giant shock absorbers will be used to address lateral loads.


All new heating and cooling systems will be installed. Thermostats will be setback type. Units will be high efficiency type. The finished HVAC system must exceed Title 24 Energy Compliance requirements by a MINIMUM of 15%, and a certification of this must be provided by the HVAC system designer and subcontractors at project completion. The system will incorporate individual units for the apartments, for maximum user control and to avoid a situation where an equipment problem would affect a large number of occupants. The condensing units will be located in inobtrusive (from the street) roof areas. Other equipment, including provisions for future ground floor uses, is planned to be placed in the basement. Air intake will be through louvers that were part of the original historic design below the storefronts. Air exhaust will be at street level in Bridge in a location selected to minimize impacts on pedestrians, occupants, and on traffic.


It is expected the building plumbing systems may require significant new work and/or repair and replacement. Where feasible, historic toilet facilities are being retained. Where these toilet facilities are part of the new functions, such as on the fifth floor, where a large number of the historic bathrooms are proposed to be incorporated into the finished design, they will be made operational. In some other locations, where they are not part of the functional design, they will not be made operational, but will be protected for future potential renovation by others. Where they are removed, the historic materials will be salvaged and incorporated as is feasible in the finished project. In many locations on the apartment floors, plumbing fixtures will be new. The hot water system will provide equivalent functional performance to a 20 gallon unitary capacity for each unit, with final design of the operating system to be developed considering the physical constraints of the existing structure, historic fabric and unit layout refinements.

Life Safety Systems

The entire structure will be fire sprinklered in accordance with NFPA standards. The integration of the fire sprinkler heads into the historic fabric will be handled as sensitively as constraints allow.

Exiting systems will provide exit pathways from each floor. These provisions will also address the 'dead end' corridors more than twenty feet in length that were part of the original 1910 design. The overall final exiting systems will incorporate portions of the existing exterior metal exits that were added some time around 1960. These exterior metal stairs and walkways will not be brought up to current code relative to railing spacing, etc, but will be reviewed in the field by the structural engineer to insure that they will be able to serve the intended purpose in regards to life safety in the event of an emergency. These metal exterior components will be prepped and painted. The termination of the external metal stairs on the east facade will be altered to not extend over the public sidewalk Those portions of the 1960's metal exits that do project over sidewalks on Bridge and Hunter will be removed. A new roof access penthouse, which will be kept to the minimum size necessary for function, will be added on the second floor roof. This will allow this exit system to enter the interior of the building at that level, to terminate in an exit enclosure that lead to a street level exit door. The other 'fire escape' pull down stairs that extend over public sidewalks on the north elevation will be eliminated and a new exit system will connect the roof terrace level to the street level in two exit enclosures. The other fire escape on the Bridge Street facade is part of the historic fabric and will remain, but it is not considered a key part of the proposed project's exiting system.

Fire alarm systems will be installed, including provisions as per Federal standards for units accommodating individuals who are sensory impaired. An emergency lighting system will be installed to insure adequate light for exit paths during power outages.

As a qualified historical building the use of the State Historical Code is mandatory for code mitigation measures. Other codes referenced will include the Code for Building Conservation (UCBC) and UBC appendices for Existing Buildings. All mechanical and electrical equipment as well as other required life safety systems will be installed in accordance with approved plans and specifications and tested and approved to be in proper working condition to the satisfaction of the building inspector prior to the issuance of the Certificate of Occupancy.


An electrical rewire will be required. Lighting will be provided for both aesthetics and security throughout the project.

Separate meters will be provided for the individual apartments.

Insulation and Energy Efficiency

The project on completion will have energy efficiency which exceeds Title 24 standards by 15%. This includes consideration of features such as equipment and envelope improvements such as adding insulation. Insulation will be installed at all wall, floor and ceiling cavities that are accessible during the course of the work, with the maximum feasible R value being placed in the framing cavities. All windows, doors and electrical plug outlets will be caulked and weatherstripped for both acoustic as well as thermal insulation.

Security Systems

A security system will be installed in each of the apartments for use by the tenants, to consist of a two way intercom system directly connected to the manager's office. The building lobby, parking areas, and common areas will be monitored by a video surveillance system. The entry to the parking areas will have remote controlled gates to restrict access to resident use. Common doors and gates will be keyed by access card or other device that can be cancelled if lost or stolen. Common area lighting levels will be designed and supplemented to meet current footcandle standards.


New appliances in each of the new kitchens will include a range, oven, refrigerator, garbage disposal. Appliances will be energy efficient, including frost free refrigerator.


There will be two rehabilitated elevators providing access to all upper level units. These will use the same shafts as the historic elevators. New controls will meet current code requirements, including life safety requirements. An additional future new elevator is planned for access to the third floor roof terrace which will be installed as part of the tenant improvements for the northwest ground level tenant improvement design package, by others.

Hazardous Materials Abatement

Hazardous materials in the historic building will be abated per applicable Federal and State standards by the project developer. The Architectural Firm and it's employees, consultants, and assigns does not provide any services, information, advice or assistance in regards to any hazardous material abatement.

Fire Sprinkler System

The building will be fully fire sprinklered as part of the project scope. Fire sprinkler systems will extend from the basement to the sixth floor.

Revised 12-23-2002               

Michael F. Malinowski AIA Architect

Applied Architecture

copyright 2003