Preservation By Disaster
"San Francisco's City Hall was a mess even before the 1989 Loma Prieta earthquake twisted its copper dome like a corkscrew...[T]he same building that rose confidently after the 1906 earthquake now stands stronger and more majestic than ever -- the best example of how the Oct. 17, 1989, earthquake gave many historic landmarks a new lease on life, both in terms of how they look and how they function. Just as the near-collapse of the Embarcadero Freeway allowed the city to reclaim the waterfront, the blows to City Hall and other buildings became the catalyst to polish crown jewels...
The overall investment of more than $1 billion in Civic Center delivered what the city had sought all along: the nation's most impressive set of governmental buildings outside Washington, D.C."
Thanks to Chris Steins