A Place for the People's Government
From the Marin County Historical Society Bulletin, March 1990, pp. 6-14.
Frank Lloyd Wright thought that the words "civic center" had an ominous ring to them, conjuring up the sense of a place where government officials exercised the their power by stepping on the feet of everyone else. In accepting the Marin County Civic Center project he stated that he would design a place where people would feel welcomed, where the principals of democracy would find their truest expression, in a setting where the space facilitated a free flowing exchange of ideas. He would design the buildings so that they blended harmoniously into the natural surroundings of the site. We have today that visionary philosophy, which Wright liked to refer to as democratic-organic architecture, concretized in the Administration and Hall of Justice Buildings of the Marin County Civic Center at Santa Venetia in northern San Rafael.
The Administration Building and the Hall of Justice gracefully span three small naturally occurring hills on the civic center campus. The two buildings have been equated to a ten-story office building placed on its side to create a low, horizontal profile in keeping with the proportions of the height of the three hills which they bridge. The two buildings meet and join on the middle of the three rises, forming an extended "V".
When Wright first saw the site, he proclaimed that he would bridge those hills with a series of arches. The Administration Building contains a single arch and the Hall of Justice a set of arches which today provide for a free flow of traffic around the buildings and to parking areas. The arch beneath the Administration Building is the most unique of the three. It is the only one of the three which open up underneath into the interior of the building through an open light well.
As with the flow of traffic outside, the interiors of both buildings provide a free flow of space for people within. The interiors are mall-like in design. The lower floors open up to the sky above through long horizontal light wells. These open spaces are covered over by a crescent shaped skylight which runs the length of both buildings except above the section of the Hall of Justice Building which houses the County Jail. The skylights allow sunlight to filter down to indoor landscaping and also to provide light for the buildings' interiors. Offices are spaced along balconies and floors on each side of these open interior spaces. When entering the Administration Building from beneath its arch one is brought directly into this spacious interior and without effort, ones gaze is drawn up vertically to the space above.
Wright's design called for offices to open out into their interior space through partially glazed walls of glass. Some offices and the cafeteria, where privacy of work space wasn't essential, have interior walls which are entirely of glass, further enhancing the sense of the interior's openness. All offices do open out to the exterior of the building through walls of glass into exterior balconies framed with graceful arches. If one stands in the corridor on the far side of the light well across from the cafeteria on the second floor of the Hall of Justice one can get a sense of Wright's intent. Through the cafeteria's interior glass wall one can see right through the cafeteria and out through the exterior glass wall to the trees and hills beyond—one seemingly continual flow of space.
Wright rebelled against the notion that a building ought to be an enclosed box with interior spaces partitioned into smaller box-like spaces. One method he used to dissolve a building's enclosure was the use of glass, permitting the outside to penetrate into interior spaces and the interior to seemingly flow to the outside. He accomplished this in large measure, in his design of the Administration and Hall of Justice wings of the Marin County Civic Center.
Wright further believed that public buildings were for the people, and that in a democratic society, people should have free and easy access to the centers of government and to their elected officials. In the Administration Building and the Hall of Justice, with the exception of the county jail and sheriff's department, he designed the buildings so that each office was accessible from interior corridors; each citizen entering the building could have easy access to whichever office he or she needed to transact business.
The Hall of Justice Building, constructed a number of years after the Administration building and containing all the design features of that building, has some features specifically designed to accommodate its function of housing the courts and the County Jail. The jail is placed at the north end of the Hall of Justice Building on the top floor. It was so designed that to the casual observer little in the external features of this section of the building betrays the function of the space within. Because the top floor of the Hall of Justice Building anchors into the crest of the south hill a fenced ground-level exercise yard could be provided for the jail population. Another unique feature in this section of the building is the corridor which links the jail and the holding cells adjoining the courtrooms, through which inmates can be escorted for arraignments and trials.
A non-public access corridor also exists on the court floor behind the courtrooms. This corridor gives judges and court staff as well as jurors easy access to any of the courtrooms and allows judges to freely move between their chambers and the courts. The courtrooms, with their circular design, are themselves innovative. The use of the circle carried through the spirit of Wright's overall design motifs for the buildings and provided for an integrating environment for judges, juries and litigants.
Those of us who live in Marin and who either work in the Civic Center Buildings, transact business in its offices, use its public library, been a litigant in its courts, or daily pass the Civic Center while traveling on the 101 corridor, can become so used to the sight of the Frank Lloyd Wright designed complex that we can take its architectural features for granted. But if we take a moment away from our preoccupations and look more closely at what Wright has created we will realize that the Marin County Civic Center is one of Marin's greatest assets.
Climb to the observation point at the Center's dome. Look out over the Hall of Justice Building along the skylighted blue roof to the south hill anchorage. View the fairgrounds from this vantage point. Examine the native plant garden at the north end of the building with its path circling the crest of the northern-most hill through a park-like setting complete with wayside benches and markers identifying the various shrubs and trees along the paths. From this north hill anchorage one can look south along the blue skylighted roof of the Administration Building which meets the hill at eye level. Examine the building from various vantage points on the campus, both from a distance and up close. One will come away with a whole new sense of the ingenuity and wisdom of Wright's design—everything fits.
The buildings are not without their flaws—leaky skylights, high energy costs—but those down-sides can't equal the tremendous up-side of what the people of Marin have invested in their Civic Center. And to realize that all of this exists today despite the bitter controversy which nearly killed the project before it ever got off the ground and dogged it throughout its construction.
With the completion of Hamilton Field in 1934 and the Golden Gate Bridge in 1937 and the building of Marin Shipyard in 1942 for the war effort, Marin experienced a substantial boost in population. The 1920's had already seen a 52 percent increase. And although the increase in the 1930's was only 27 percent increase, by the 1940's it had shot up to 61 percent and was followed by a staggering 71 percent increase by the 1950's.
The old courthouse had long outgrown its space. By 1952 county offices were scattered throughout the city of San Rafael in 12 separate locations besides the courthouse, and it was costing the County over $49,000 per year in lease payments. That year the Board of Supervisors hired Louis J. Kroeger and Associates of San Francisco to do a study of current and future space requirements for housing county services. Kroeger's report indicated the county needed twice the available space immediately and future needs would be three times that. The report further recommended that a new site be chosen to accommodate all of the added space.
As a result of Kroeger's report the Board of Supervisors submitted two propositions to the voters in the November election of 1952. The first was to spend $1,500,000 on the old courthouse and the second was to secure a new site and build a $2,000,000 civic building. Voters defeated both measures. After the election the Board voted to adopt a "pay-as-you-go" plan to accomplish the same results.
Mary Summer, progressive head of the County Planning Department, at the time was much encouraged by the Board's actions. She had been trying for a number of years to get the supervisors to address the problem of fragmented government services and the need to consolidate them in one location. Another event which occurred in November of 1952 would help assure this eventual outcome.
Mrs. Vera Schultz, long a member of the Marin League of Women Voters, first woman to sit on the Mill Valley City Council, was elected to the Board of Supervisors, first woman to hold that position also. Winning in a closely contested election, requiring a recount, she had run on a platform calling for better roads, flood control, the hiring of a county administrator, realistic planning, and fair assessments (the latter would cause her defeat eight years later).
When the newly convened Board met in January 1953, they sought to implement two important agenda items—the adoption of a County Administrative form of government and the building of a civic center complex to consolidate county services. The Board which convened that January consisted of William Fusselman, Walter Castro, William Wright, James Kehoe, and Vera Schultz.
A site committee was formed co-chaired by W. P. Duhamel and Carline Livermore. Because the site of the County Fair at the Marin Art and Garden Center, leased annually for a two week period, was becoming too small for the increasingly popular event, it was decided to choose a site large enough to accommodate both civic buildings and the fairgrounds. The committee favored three sites, all along Highway 101—the San Quentin Wye, south of San Rafael (Larkspur Landing), the Freitas Ranch north of San Rafael (Terra Linda), and the Scettrini Ranch at Santa Venetia, northeast of San Rafael. In Jun 1953, the Board chose the Santa Venetia site and offered $237,000 for the land. The option was allowed to expire due to the delaying tactics of William Fusselman.
"Bill" Fusselman was vehemently opposed to any move outside the city limits of San Rafael. The Scettrini ranch was outside the city limits (the Civic Center was annexed in 1969). He had himself proposed the San Rafael Military Academy (Marin Academy) on Mission Street in San Rafael as a site for the new civic center. A small businessman and former mayor of San Anselmo, he sincerely believed that moving county government outside San Rafael would be detrimental to the county's largest city at the time and would furthermore be illegal. He argued that the site of the county seat had been designated by state charter and could not be changed. A legal ruling was demanded on the issue. The District Attorney's office ruled that nothing in the Government Codes prevented the relocation of the county seat outside the City of San Rafael.
With the election of 1954 the way was finally cleared to proceed with the civic center proposal and the adoption of an Administrative form of government. William Wright had resigned from office and Bill Gnoss had been appointed to fill out Wright's term. Gnoss ran without opposition in 1954. James Marshall from West Marin was elected in 1954 to fill out the unexpired term of James Kehoe. Thus in January 1955 when the new Board was seated, the famous 4 to 1 board was in place and Marin's "progressive board" was about to change the face of county government.
In April 1956 the Board voted four to one to purchase the Scettrini property of 130 acres and two adjacent parcels totaling 140 acres, for $551,416. The price had escalated since the 1953 offer. Sixty of those acres was paid for from county funds which had been accumulating since 1952 and the remaining eighty acres were purchased with State funds which were allotted annually to county fairs. Marin had never drawn its full allotment of the $65,000 annual payment. As a result the county had a sizable surplus.
In June 1956 the Board gave permission for the erection of a National Guard Armory on four acres in the southeast comer of the 140 acre site; also in 1956 the Board voted to establish the office of County Administrator, Donald Jensen becoming the County's first Administrator.
After the site was chosen for the new civic center, the site committee dissolved and the Board appointed the Civic Center Committee, one of whose responsibilities was to choose an architect. The committee consisted of the heads of five county departments: Mary Summers of Public Works; Leon de Lisle, Auditor; Marvin Brigham of Public Works; Donald Jensen, County Administrator; and Leland Jordan, County Counsel.
Over twenty-six architects were interviewed during 1956 and the first part of 1957, at which point Vera Schultz suggested that they ought to approach the architect, Frank Lloyd Wright, whose designs were environmentally sensitive, functional and reflected the individual personality of the area in which they were built. At the time Wright was in the Bay Area as the Bernard Maybeck lecturer at the University of California. On April 26, 1957, four supervisors (Castro, Gnoss, Marshall and Schultz) and the entire committee met with Wright during the day at the offices of the Frank Lloyd Wright Foundation in San Francisco and that evening attended his lecture at Berkeley. They came back convinced that Wright was the architect to design the new Marin Civic Center.
On June 27 the Board voted four to one to open negotiations with Wright despite a last-minute protest from local architects and a presentation by the famed modem Los Angeles architect Josef Neutra. On July 29, W right spoke at a public meeting at San Rafael High School, providing an opportunity for the people of Marin to meet the famous architect. Wright's sharp wit and caustic observations kept a crowd of about 600 applauding and laughing during an hour of presentation and a half hour of questions.
During the formal signing of Wright's contract the following day in the supervisors' chambers, members of the American Legion read a letter in Wright's presence accusing him of "active and extensive support" of Communist activities before World War II. Wright angrily labeled the charges ridiculous, saying he was a loyal American and his record proved it. If they didn't like it, they could lump it. He stalked out of the Board meeting. After placating him with assurance that Marin really loved him, he was taken to lunch at the Meadow Club and afterwards taken to see the Civic Center site. Wright liked what he saw and before leaving the site he had already worked out in his mind the conceptual design for the site.
Fresh ammunition against the civic center project was provided when in late August Republican Assemblyman Carrol Mutzner from Madison Wisconsin came to Marin to warn the supervisors that in his opinion, Wright would not stay within budget. Wright had been hired to design the Madison, Wisconsin civic center. A call by Mary Summers to Madison brought the response from the president of the city council that Wright's design plans for the Madison civic center did in fact meet budget expectations.
In March of 1958 Wright presented his preliminary plans for the Civic Center and fairgrounds to the Board of Supervisors and to a jam-packed audience of over 700 people at San Rafael High School. During his presentation he asked for a show of hands of the people who had seen his sketches which were on display in the cafeteria. Only about 20 hands went up. Mildly exasperated, he stopped his presentation and asked everyone to go view his plans, after which he would continue his presentation.
In the month that followed the presentation during which the Board of Supervisors deliberated on Wright's plans the Marin County Taxpayer's Association began considering drafting a petition armed at forcing an election o the issue of Wright's contract and Vera Schultz and Bill Fusselman engaged in sharp verbal exchanges over the attempt being made to break the contract. Opponents of the contract were castigated as "fossils and reactionaries" at a meeting of the Terra Linda Community Services District. They unanimously approved a motion supporting the Supervisors' choice of Wright as the project's architect. Further support came from a citizen's group which formed a committee, the Citizens Committee For the Civic Center, to support Wright's plans.
On April 28, 1958 in Courtroom 3, at a jam-packed hearing in the old courthouse, the supervisors authorized the famed architect to prepare working plans and specifications for the first two stages, the Administration Building and the Hall of Justice Building, and to draft final plans for the county fairgrounds. The motion for acceptance of Wright's plans was made by James Marshall and seconded by Bill Gnoss. It passed four to one, Bill Fusselman casting the nay vote. At this session the Marin County Taxpayers Association pleaded for an election on the issue, saying that they had no beef with the architect, but with the cost of the project.
On April 9, 1959, the world and Marin received the news of Frank Lloyd Wright's death. Board members were saddened by the passing of a man they had developed a personal relationship with. Bill Gnoss was quoted as saying that you had to know the man personally to realize how great a genius he was. He was one of the few great men he had ever met and he would cherish the experience.
Fusselman saw an opportunity in Wright's passing to bring up the question of Wright's architectural fee which was 10% of the cost of the project. He wanted the Board to renegotiate the fee at eight percent, which was the percentage asked by other architects for similar projects. Legal counsel warned against any attempt to subvert the project. Plans had been completed on the Administration Building and the Hall of Justice and overall design for the fairground. No court in the land would allow the contract to be broken, advised County Counsel, Jordan. The Board voted to continue the contract with the Frank Lloyd Wright Foundation at the given rate over Fusselman's dissenting vote.
In November blueprints were approved and bids for the construction of the Administration Building were called for. In December the contract was awarded to Rothschild, Raffin and Weirick, Inc. of San Francisco. Four of the six bids had come in under the architect's estimates. Rothschild, Raffin and Weirick's bid was for $3,638,735, including site preparation. Total cost for this first phase would total $4,746,178 which included Wright's fee, building cost, engineering, testing, and site development excluding the building furniture which Wright had specially designed and would be built at San Quentin State Prison.
In January 1960, the supervisors voted one to four to enter into a long-term lease with the U.S. Government for a post office to be placed at the entrance of the civic center. Supervisor Fusselman kept his record intact and voted no on the lease agreement.
The long awaited day arrived and with the turn of the earth with four golden spade shovels, each sporting a red ribbon, the project got underway on February 15, 1960. One shovel stood idle that day, the sun gleaming off its golden spade. This shovel was meant for Supervisor Fusselman, who refused to attend the groundbreaking ceremony. The event was attended by a crowd of 350, who stood in the sunshine and listened to Mrs. Frank Lloyd Wright declare that "Marin County will go into the record as the most illuminated county in America" for inviting her husband to design the center. "He never violated nature, and he put this building here to beautify it."
In June, after long delays, bids were finally called for the construction of the National Guard Armory at the southeast edge of the fairgrounds. The armory would be the first in the United States to combine facilities for the National Guard and the Naval Reserves. Plans were prepared by architects of the Twelfth Naval District.
June was also election month. Supervisor Fusselman, Marshall and Schultz were all up for reelection. The results of the election would cause the most serious threat to the Civic Center project thus far. In that election both supervisors Marshall and Schultz were defeated. The old seasoned politician, Fusselman, retained his seat. Marshall, whose district was West Marin, lost to George H. Ludy over the issue of the proposed Point Reyes National Seashore. He was on record as supporting the project. Vera Schultz, on the other hand, was a victim of one of her successfully made promises of eight years before—fair and equitable assessments.
Reassessments were authorized in 1958 by the Board and by June 1960 assessments in her district had been adjusted upwards, doubling and tripling in some cases. Vera admitted in later years that the timing was bad but the reassessments were fairly first applied in her district because the third district had the largest turnover of property in the County at the time. Vera's opponent was J. Walter Blair. Blair capitalized on the reassessment issue and won the election. In January at a dinner given in his honor, County Counsel Leland Jordon paid tribute to this lady of strong progressive ideas by referring to her as "Marin's First Lady" and presented her with a scroll bearing the names of all her admirers, which were many; the scroll was signed "with love and admiration."
During her eight years as supervisor Vera fought hard with the help of other members of the Board to bring a new style of government to Marin, coordinated, consolidated and housed in civic buildings which would reflect that progressive thrust. But when the new board convened in January 1961, Bill Fusselman, ever the guardian of those interests which returned him to office, would attempt to torpedo all those efforts of the previous eight years.
During the six months between the elections and the seating of the new Board in January, there began an exodus of County department heads who felt uncomfortable with the prospect of working under the new Board. Mary Summers left after twenty years as Planning Director. Donald Jenson, County Administrator, resigned, Bill Fusselman telling his successor, Alan Bruce, that his job "might be short-lived." County Counsel, Leland Jordan, left his post shortly after the election. Lesser employees were also leaving at an alarming rate.
When the new Board was seated in January, the worst fears materialized. Bill Fusselman was elected chairman. The new Board, now split 3 to 2 in Fusselman's favor, began to dismantle the office of County Administration. And on January 10th the Board voted 3 to 2 to stop work on the Civic Center project and dismissed the Civic Center Committee which had been overseeing the project.
Was it revenge on the part of Fusselman which led to the stop-work order? He had consistently voted against the project and there were a number of bitter confrontations between himself and Vera Schultz over the project. Today with some historic perspective we can be somewhat dispassionate concerning the controversy. Fusselman had consistently fought the Civic Center project from the start, fighting tooth and nail on the basis of cost and location. Both, in his estimation, were contrary to the interests of the constituency he felt her represented. Also at the time of the work stoppage the county faced two other expensive liabilities—the state had condemned the old county hospital and the county needed a new juvenile detention center, the present one bulging at the seams. The solution was simple in his opinion: convert this new "extravagant" building into the County hospital. Of course this wasn't practical, as he was informed, and as eventualities would prove, the County would cease operations of the County hospital altogether and the new juvenile center would be built with monies borrowed for the Veteran's fund. In the end the stoppage which lasted a week, cost the county money when the contractor sued for time lost on the project.
If the lesson of the "stop work" order wasn't sufficient evidence of Marin's voter sentiments, for strong public support forced the "stop work" order to be rescinded, the next action taken by the Board left no doubt. On My 24, 1961, the Board voted 3 to 2 on a motion of Walter Blair, to abolish the office of County Administrator. The Board had already eroded the responsibilities of the office since resuming their seats in January.
Within the week a public outcry arose which led to the immediate recall of Blair and the election of Peter Behr in his place. Blair served less than a year of his four-year term.
In March of 1961 the Armory Building was completed, and on May 19, 1962 the Civic Center Post Office was dedicated. Placed on nearly an acre of land near the entrance to the Administration Building on the southwest side of Golf Avenue north of San Pedro Road, the new post office replaced a small contract station in Santa Venetia. It became a branch of the San Rafael Post Office. One hundred people gathered for its dedication. The building was designed by Wright and is the only U.S. Government building designed by the late architect.
On October 13, 1962, the Administration Building was dedicated. Attending was a crowd of about 1000 despite the steady rain. Brightly uniformed bands played as people streamed through the golden aluminum gates of the building and swarmed over the building's four levels. Board Chairman Walter Castro, in addressing the assembled crowd, said to the applause of those gathered that the Board hoped to proceed to the next stage and that the County had a million dollars in the budget towards construction of the Hall of Justice. Mrs. Wright, who had come from Arizona for the dedication, told the crowd that her husbands philosophy emphasized the "beauty of life" and "that there are great creators and fulfillers in the world, such as the people of Marin."
Judge Jordan Martinelli, who introduced the guests at the ceremony, paid special tribute to Vera Schultz, who was present at the dedication. Just as he hadn't attended the ground breaking ceremonies, Bill Fusselman refused to attend the dedication.
The big move into the new building began the last weekend of November 1962. The following departments and offices made the move into the new building: the Agricultural Commissioner, Farm Advisor, Superintendent of Schools, County Counsel, County Administrator, Assessor, Auditor-Controller, Tax Collector-Treasurer, Board of Supervisors, Veteran's Service Officer, the Welfare Department, Sanitation Division, Medical Department, Audio-Visual Department of the County Superintendent of Schools Office, the Department of Public Works, the Planning Department, Data Processing, and the County Library. The County Board of Education held the first public board meeting in the new building on December 10, 1962 and voted their approval of the structures efficiency.
In the election of 1964 William Fusselman, after twenty-two years in office, was defeated for re-election. He was succeeded by Ernest Kettenhofer. George Ludy lost to Thomas Storer and Byron Leudecker succeeded Walter Castro, who had died in office in 1963. Only Bill Gnoss, elected in 1950, remained of the board who had built the Administration Building. Peter Behr, elected in 1961 to replace Blair, was the fifth member of the Board.
The new Board proceeded with the second stage of the Civic Center project, the Hall of Justice Building, calling for a special election to approve a $7,750,000 bond measure to help pay the cost of the $11,756,000 building. The County would add $2,000,000 in accumulated money generated from the sale of the old courthouse, and money from State and Federal grants. The special election was held on June 8, 1965. Despite the low voter turnout the measure passed, and on May 26, 1966, Governor Edmund G. Brown pulled a lever on a cement bucket used to pour the concrete for the cornerstone for the new building, giving a symbolic start to the project. Before a crowd of three hundred, Brown declared that it was important to leave the state more beautiful for coming generations and that of all the counties in the state, Marin is doing the best job in creating beauty. "Together we're proving that government has a valid role in creating beauty," the governor said.
The Hall of Justice was scheduled for opening in October of 1968. But Aaron Green was not satisfied with some of the finishing touches which in his opinion didn't meet specifications and the contractor was asked to correct the deficiencies. Delays were further compounded by labor strikes, bad weather, construction changes and late deliveries. The general contractor, Robert E. McKee of Dallas, Texas, promised Green the building would be ready by July 1969. July came and went and the building was still not ready. The contractor placed the blame on subcontractors. Finally after nearly fourteen months of delays, the Board of Supervisors accepted the $11.7 million Hall of Justice on December 9, 1969, and on Saturday, December 13, an open house was held which attracted an orderly crowd of 6,000. The new county jail drew the biggest crowds followed by interest in the circular courtrooms and judge's chambers.
The third phase of the Civic Center project was completed with the opening of the $3.5 million Veteran's Memorial Auditorium and an inaugural concert on September 25, 1971. The Marin Symphony, conducted by Sandor Salzo, performed the premier of Darius Milhaud's Suite in G, commissioned especially for the event. On October 8, 1971 the Marin County Fair opened a four day run for the first time on the new civic center fairgrounds. In a 60 day period preceding the opening, architect Aaron Green, landscape contractor A. and J. Shooter of San Rafael, and fair manager Mrs. Marcelle McCoy and her staff worked hard in turning a barren, dusty stretch of ground into an oasis. That year a National Aeronautics and Space Administration exhibit with its authentic moon rocks was the feature attraction. Finally on June 30, 1976, the Exhibition Hall and Showcase Theater were dedicated.
In 1971 the Doughboy Statue, honoring the veterans of the First World War was moved from its old location in front of the old courthouse to the Avenue of the Flags, which runs along the north side of the Veteran's Auditorium. In November 1985 a Korean Veteran's Memorial was placed alongside the Doughboy Statue. The Avenue of the Flags is itself a memorial to the veterans of all wars and is maintained by the Marin County Veteran's Council.
Today the fairgrounds, with its lagoon encircled with paths, park benches, picnic tables, trees, shrubs, and lawns, is a park-like setting where people of all ages can be seen feeding the ducks, picnicking, jogging or walking around the lagoon, or just sitting on the benches taking in the beauty of the surroundings.
Marin is indeed fortunate to have had people with vision who risked the unconventional and who saw to it that the peoples' place of government and recreation would forever stand as one of the great architectural achievements of this century. And if anyone has doubts as to the truth of this statement, they can observe on any given day the number of visitors who come from all over the world with cameras in hand to record the triumph of the Frank Lloyd Wright design.
Some have said that in designing the Civic Center complex and fairgrounds Wright had built a monument to himself. But Wright probably would have said, with that characteristic twinkle in his eye, that what you see is an expression of that divine spark which is in everyone and that his pencils merely gave it expression.
1. The Building and the Bridge by Dr. Evelyn Morris Radford
2. A.I.A. Journal, April 1980, "A Civic Center and Its Civitas" by Dr. Gee Rand
3. Frank Lloyd Wright: In the Realm of Ideas
4. Organic Architecture: The Principles of Frank Lloyd Wright, by Aaron Green
5. Marin County Civic Center, 1962-1987, printed by the Friends of the Marin County Free Library
6. Frank Lloyd Wright – Marin County Civic Center, 1962 commemorative brochure produced by the Board of Supervisors
7. Clipping files: Marin Independent Journal, Anna Kent Room, Marin Civic Center Library; Marin Historical Society