The Summer Sweep at the Wharf aims to make the area more inviting for visitors at the height of the summer tourist season.
Crews will spend the next several days picking up litter, taking care of trees, removing graffiti, painting curbs and steam-cleaning garbage cans.
It is a collaborative effort, combining not just city workers, but businesses and volunteers as well.
"It's really a philosophy that the government alone cannot and should not be solely responsible for keeping the city clean and beautiful," San Francisco Director of Public Works Ed Reiskin said.
The Summer Sweep at the Wharf is the fourth in a series of cleanup programs in the city. More than 100 volunteers have signed up to put the finishing touches on the area Saturday morning.