Eric Owen Moss’s newest creation, Waffle, is a fraternal twin of the Cactus Tower—a 55-foot-high steel frame enclosure that holds a cactus garden 30 feet above ground in Culver City’s Hayden Tract. Waffle, which will measure the same height as Cactus, will be located on the eastern perimeter of Hayden Tract, on the other side of an industrial studio.
While the Cactus Tower is rectilinear, the similarly proportioned Waffle will undulate like precariously stacked papers. The Waffle will hold a first floor conference area, a mezzanine lounge, a third floor with closed meeting rooms, and an open roof deck.
“As one moves vertically, the position changes, the surface starts to curve and it undulates,” explained Moss.
The building will be steel framed, like the Cactus Tower, but with facades composed of a grid of vertical and horizontal louvers with in-fill glass panels. As the tower curves more steeply, the louvers will move closer together. The louvers separate as the curve flattens.
The internal structure will be made up of a series of straight pipes about 18-inches in diameter. The pipes will be segmented again and again, following the curvature of the building’s exterior. “The biggest challenge was how to make the columns,” said Moss. “The shapes are complex and if you miss by a little bit, the closer you get to the ground, the more precarious the dimensioning discussion.”