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Cunjunctive Points: Eric Owen Moss’s Hayden Tract in Culver City

Samitaur Tower / © Courtesy of Eric Owen Moss Architects & Tom Bonner Photography
Samitaur Tower / © Courtesy of Eric Owen Moss Architects & Tom Bonner Photography

Taking place Saturday, August 18 from 10am-2pm, the Society of Architectural Historians/Southern California Chapter will explore the transformative power of architecture, art and design at Culver City’s Hayden Tract, where award-winning architect Eric Owen Moss has been creating innovative structures for 25 years. In creating a vibrant community for creative workers in what was once a bleak industrial area, we begin to ask ourselves, ‘Can architecture be used as a catalyst for positive social change?’ The day includes a panel discussion featuring Frederick & Laurie Samitaur-Smith, the enlightened developers of “Conjunctive Points”; a self-conducted walking tour of over 20 buildings and art installations in the area; light refreshments at the Samitaur Tower; and closing remarks. For more information, please visit here.

AECOM to give LAX a facelift

TBIT Arrival Loop at Dusk - Courtesy of AECOM
TBIT Arrival Loop at Dusk - Courtesy of AECOM

The Los Angeles International Airport (LAX), one of the world’s busiest airports, is undergoing a facelift. As part of a multi-phase project, AECOM is working with Los Angeles World Airports (LAWA) to create a sensational experience for the 61 million passengers who travel in and out of LAX annually. The project aspires to unify the disparate components of the airport’s central terminal area (CTA) and insert grand gestures that provide architectural hierarchy — yielding LAX as exciting as the city in which it resides. Through an artful integration of lighting, graphics, and architecture, the design draws from key existing airport elements such as the 1960s architecture of the Theme Building and the 60-foot polychromatic light pylons that define the airport’s entry.

Master Plan for LA Union Station / Grimshaw + Gruen Associates

The New York office of Grimshaw and LA based Gruen Associates were officially awarded the Los Angeles Union Station master plan last Thursday. The Los Angeles County Metropolitan Transportation Authority (Metro) Board of Directors, chaired by Los Angeles Mayor Antonio Villaraigosa, approved a nomination that sets in motion a two year master plan creation process to generate a new vision for Union Station, in conjunction with the general revitalization and growth of downtown Los Angeles as the city and metro look to the future. More architects’ description after the break.

KAA Design Group wins Best Adaptive Reuse for Latitude 33

Courtesy of KAA Design Group
Courtesy of KAA Design Group

Latitude 33, a luxurious collection of beach-side homes ranging from townhouses, penthouses, and single floor units, was partially designed from a forty year-old, nine-storey “eye sore for the neighborhood” that was once an office building. The mixed use development, designed by KAA Design Group, includes residential and commercial spaces in Marina del Rey in Southern California. The strategic decisions involved with designing these apartments from an early 197os office building earned Latitude 33 two Gold Nugget Merit Awards, one of which was for Best Adaptive Reuse.

Read on for more after the break.

Before; Courtesy of Van Tilburg, Banvard & Soderbergh (VTBS) Courtesy of KAA Design Group Courtesy of KAA Design Group Courtesy of KAA Design Group

Grimshaw and Gruen win Union Station commission

Grimshaw / Gruen Via The Source
Grimshaw / Gruen Via The Source

The Metropolitan Transportation Authority has selected L.A.’s Gruen Associates and London’s Grimshaw Architects to design the new master plan for Union Station in Los Angeles. The pair was awarded with the commission over some of the biggest names in the profession, such as Norman Foster and Renzo Piano (view the other five fantastical proposals here). They will transform the historic 1939 station and its surrounding 40 acres into a world-class, 21st century transportation hub that will host the future high-speed rail system that plans to connect L.A. and San Francisco. The master planning process could take as little as 24 months. No surprise, considering both Gruen and Grimshaw have a great amount of experience with transit related projects. Gruen recently worked with Metro on the first phase of the Expo Line, while Grimshaw has extensive resume in Europe and is involved with the forthcoming Fulton Street Transit Center in Lower Manhattan, which is planned for completion in 2014.

Video: Building the Golden Gate Bridge

Courtesy of the Prelinger Archives, this archival 1930s footage by Bethlehem Steel captures every phase of construction of the Golden Gate Bridge. The iconic, San Francisco structure celebrated its 75th anniversary this year, as it opened May 27th, 1937. Including the approaches, the Golden Gate Bridge spans a remarkable length of 1.7 miles (8981ft or 2737m), making it the longest span in the world from its completion in 1937 until the Verrazano Narrows Bridge was built in New York in 1964. A unique aspect to the construction of the suspension bridge was the emphasis placed on safety. With the use of safety nets, hard hats and safety belts only eleven workers died during construction, which was a new safety record for the time.

'Inside Out: 7 Architectural Thoughts' Exhibition

Taking place June 8-28 at the Korean Cultural Center in Los Angeles, the ‘Inside Out: 7 Architectural Thoughts’ exhibition features seven progressive Korean architectural designers bringing up a challenging topic about ‘Koreaness’ to the Korean American community. With their cultural usages incongruent at times in multi-cultural communities of the United Sates, they are trying to make the cultural usages more suitable for current circumstances and create an indigenous cultural entity that is in harmony with diverse ethnic and cultural circumstances. Personally or communally driven, this effort has been performed not only by the Korean American community but also other ethnic groups. More information on the exhibition after the break.

Architecture at Zero 2012 Competition

Courtesy of AIA San Francisco, PG&E, ZNE Pilot Program, and UC Merced
Courtesy of AIA San Francisco, PG&E, ZNE Pilot Program, and UC Merced

Open to students and professionals worldwide in architecture, planning and urban design studios, the Architecture at Zero 2012 challenges participants to design a zero net energy (ZNE) student housing or administrative office building design for the University of California Merced in Merced, California. As part of the challenge, entrants will also be asked to create a diagrammatic district energy plan for the Bellevue Gateway development. Organized by the American Institute of Architects (AIA) San Francisco chapter and the Pacific Gas and Electric Company (PG&E) Zero Net Energy (ZNE) Pilot Program, in partnership with the University of California, Merced, this unique event explores the cutting edge of energy efficient design. The deadline for submissions is October 1. For more information, please visit here.

SCI-Arc's Ball-Nogues Studio Installation + 2x8: Taut Exhibitions

SCI-Arc will be presenting two main exhibitions this upcoming month. The Ball-Nogues Studio: Vevrus 1, Negative Impression exhibition starting June 1 until July 8 that will host Benjamin Ball, Gaston Nogues and Hsinming Fung to discuss the installation on Monday, June 25 at 7pm. The site specific installation is a disposable architecture of literal references that calls into question the contemporary architectural vogue for digital complexity and abstraction. The cast impressions of 1973 Volkswagen Beetles and speedboats unite to form a strong structural whole that serves as a lookout tower. Then, two projects by SCI-Arc students will be featured this year at the AIA LA hosted 2×8 exhibition, opening June 5, 6-9pm at the A+D Museum in Los Angeles. Fore more information on the events, please visit here.

Connect:Homes Offers Affordable, Modern, Sustainable Homes

Courtesy of Connect:Homes
Courtesy of Connect:Homes

Jared Levy and Gordon Stott, formerly of Marmol Radziner Prefab, recently launched a new company that hopes to solve the endemic problem of prefab to date: price. They knew how to make beautiful, sustainable prefab. But now, with their patent-pending technology, which allows them to build modules to a whopping 95% complete at the factory, and ship them like shipping containers by rail, sea, or truck, Connect:Homes has figured out how to provide the same level of modern style at an all-inclusive price of $145/sf out of the factory. That’s all inclusive with no surprises. More images and architects’ description after the break.

TCH Boutique Hotel / Abramson Teiger Architects

Designed by Abramson Teiger Architects, the TCH boutique hotel, located in downtown Los Angeles, weaves the nature of the temporal society with the evolving art world. Reflecting the architects’ philosophy of a visually dynamic architecture which evokes a sense of peace, sanctuary, and productivity, the art gallery becomes a backdrop to viewed experiences while the hotel becomes a backdrop to the guests. They are both fortresses of collections: a collection of art and a collection of people. All spaces within the 47 rooms activate as a gallery resulting in a building that activates as an art piece. More images and architects’ description after the break.

Video: Gehry Residence, 2012 AIA Twenty-five Year Award Recipient

The AIA sat down with famed architect Frank Gehry - recipient of the 2012 Twenty-five Year Award - to discuss his eccentric Santa Monica home that has enormously influenced both theory and practice over the last 25 to 35 years. In the late 1970s, Frank Gehry transformed an existing Dutch colonial home in a quiet Southern California neighborhood into a controversial symbol of deconstructivism by surrounding it with an unconventional new addition. As the AIA describes, “The exposed structure, chaotic fusion of disparate materials, and aggressive juxtaposition of old and new communicate a sense of real-time formal evolution and conflict, as if the building were dynamically, violently creating itself with found objects.”Towards the end of the video, Gehry advises students to “learn to be yourself and be curious about what is going on around you and respond to it.”Learn more about the Gehry Residence here on ArchDaily!via AIA National

Video: Moby Talks LA Architecture

Best know as a musician, Moby is quickly gaining lots of attention for his “weird architecture blog” that is centered around his fascination with Los Angeles architecture. In this video published by 1883 Magazine, Moby discusses his thoughts on some his personal favorites, starting with Frank Lloyd Wright’s Ennis House, which Moby depicts as an Incan spaceship from 100,000 years ago.

Christopher Hawthorne takes on the Boulevards

Screenshot via Los Angeles Times; "Atlantic on the Move" by Christopher Hawthorne
Screenshot via Los Angeles Times; "Atlantic on the Move" by Christopher Hawthorne

Christopher Hawthorne’s article “Atlantic on the Move“, published in the Los Angeles Times, covers the transitions taking place along LA’s boulevards and one in particular: the 5600 block of Atlantic Avenue. Hawthorne reveals the changes taking place that are “reversing decades of neglect” among LA’s roadways. Among those that have promoted a cultural association with Los Angeles: traffic, congestion and miles of roadways. The article covers the small steps that take place over time via minor interventions that combine to change the face of the boulevards to more pedestrian and bike-friendly spaces for alternative modes of transportation. Read on for more after the break.

Downtown LA Hotel / XTEN Architecture

Courtesy of XTEN Architecture
Courtesy of XTEN Architecture

XTEN Architecture is planning a new, 65,000-square-foot hotel in downtown Los Angeles, California. The monolithic concrete structure will be carved by a system of slots and slices that bring light, air and views deep into the building. Equipped with a performance-based lobby, two subterranean bars, restaurant and a rooftop terrace featuring an infinity edge pool, this mid-rise hotel will surely attract some attention. Continue after the break to learn more!

Marin Living: Home Tours

Taking place May 12 from 1oam-4pm, the Marin Living: Home Tours, hosted by AIA San Francisco, is an open house tour featuring five projects that showcase and celebrate the richness of our local built environment in hopes of engaging the general public about the value of good design and its impact on our daily lives. Now in its third year, Marin Living: Home Tours offers an inside look at the wealth of great design in our region. Tour-goers will have the opportunity to explore cutting-edge residential projects in Sausalito, Mill Valley and San Rafael, meet design teams, and discover innovative design solutions. Featured projects exhibit sustainable features, innovative use of materials and thoughtful integration with the neighborhood and surrounding landscape. For more information and to purchase tickets, please visit here.

Top Architects invited to reimagine San Francisco’s Fort Mason Center

© Sean Munson
© Sean Munson

A mix of twenty local and internationally renowned firms have been invited to participate in a design competition seeking “creative and practical design concepts” on thirteen acres of prime waterfront real estate at the historic Fort Mason Center in San Francisco. Although mostly comprised of parking lots and former military buildings, the site attracts nearly one million annual visitors with its stellar views, cultural events, historic background and well-respected restaurant. Depending on who accepts the challenge, local firms may compete with big names such as James Corner Field Operations, SANAA, Studio Gang Architects and BIG. Continue reading after the break for more.

Ball-Nogues Studio "Yevrus 1, Negative Impression" Exhibition

The Southern California Institute of Architecture (SCI-Arc) is pleased to present “Yevrus 1, Negative Impression,” an installation designed for the SCI-Arc Gallery by alumni Benjamin Ball (B.Arch ‘03) and Gaston Nogues (B.Arch ‘94) of Los Angeles-based Ball-Nogues Studio, opening June 1 and running until July 8 at SCI-Arc. Constructed from non-architectural artifacts, Yevrus 1, Negative Impression is a disposable architecture of literal references that calls into question the contemporary architectural vogue for digital complexity and abstraction. The cast impressions of 1973 Volkswagen Beetles and speedboats unite to form a strong structural whole that serves as a lookout tower in the SCI-Arc Gallery. More information after the break.