The third and final building defining Water’s Edge, a 6.5-acre office campus in Playa Vista, California, is nearly complete. Designed by Los Angeles-based firm SPF:architects, the four-story structure, named WE3, will provide a striking new building with over 183,000 square feet of creative workspace and two floors of underground parking to an area gradually being referred to as “Silicon Beach,” given its recent influx of top-level tech companies, including Google, Yahoo!, YouTube, BuzzFeed, Facebook, and AOL. Multinational corporation Nike has already agreed to rent two floors of the building. According to SPF, the main challenge of developing the design language for WE3 was creating “a plan fully integrated with existing conditions that both maximized the lot’s buildable area and maintained a compelling architectural standard.” To achieve this, the design team went beyond the client brief by creating a new public courtyard, planning for highly flexible office space, and relocating the preexisting soccer pitch, which will now be more central to the office campus to visually connect the site’s main amenities. To meet their goal of LEED Gold certification, the architects incorporated locally sourced and recycled concrete and metal in the construction process, while the large, insulated windows defining the exterior are designed to reduce energy use. The “floating” perforated aluminum skin wrapping the facade is not only the project’s most distinguishing feature, but it also functions as a solar shading device in conjunction with the building’s many deep-set balconies. And, because the building’s top floor was not legally allowed to exceed 20,000 square feet due to zoning restrictions, a “sky garden” was added to the middle of the building featuring drought-tolerant landscaping within a wind-shielded terrace. WE3 broke ground in April 2018, topped out this month, and is scheduled to be completed by May 2020.
Posts tagged with "Playa Vista":
Los Angeles–based Gehry Partners is moving ahead with a 135-foot-tall office structure slated for L.A.’s Silicon Beach district, the second such creative office project announced in recent months. The firm broke ground earlier this year on an 80,000-square-foot, single-story office complex called Ascend in nearby El Segundo that features spartan formal treatments and exuberant planting arrangements. The subdued creative office complex is designed with 24-foot interior ceilings and is modeled after the ubiquitous wood bowstring truss warehouse structures that populate L.A.’s industrial neighborhoods. With its latest office project—a 200,000-square-foot complex located just next door to the firm’s own offices in Playa Vista—the firm will add another streamlined creative office project to a growing body of tempered, late-career work following in the footsteps of the firm’s headquarters for Facebook from 2015. The purposefully banal projects in question are somewhat of a departure for a firm best-known for exuberant, sculptural works typically made from exquisite materials. Even so, the projects bear a certain resemblance to Gehry’s earliest works, which focused extensively on deploying prototypical materials and building technologies in unexpected ways. The New Beatrice West project, as it is known, expands on this new mode by creating a multi-story office tower complex peppered throughout with terraces and groves of trees. Renderings for the project depict a multi-volume cluster wrapped in alternating expanses of glass curtain walls and solid building masses. The curtain walled areas are delineated by projecting floor plates that create horizontal louvres over the glass expanses while the more solid facades are punctured by punched windows. The building’s 845-stall parking podium at the building’s base is concealed by an expansive arrangement of growing walls, trees, and terraced volumes that will include a restaurant, among other programs. The project is currently undergoing approval by city agencies and will be appearing before the Los Angeles City Planning Commission in coming days. Planning documents submitted in support of the project indicate the complex will take roughly 22 months to build, with final completion expected in 2019.
With a newly proposed plan for a 100-unit senior housing complex by Belzberg Architects, the Los Angeles Jewish Home (LAJH) is making clear its plans to expand outside the San Fernando Valley are serious. The LAJH, with over 1,000 residents, is already the largest single-source senior housing provider in Los Angeles. Still, it seems its latest expansion can’t come soon enough. Although LAJH has yet to wrap up construction on a new, Gensler-designed campus in the coastal Playa Vista neighborhood, all 199 units in that $100 million project have already been reserved. This recently-revealed proposal will provide 100 additional units in a second location a few miles away. The new mixed-use complex, located in the Beverly-Fairfax area in L.A.’s Westside, will feature 40 independent living, 40 assisted living, and 20 guest rooms in a structure that will also contain a new synagogue for the Orthodox Jewish Congregation of Beth-Israel and a Program of All-Inclusive Care for the Elderly (P.A.C.E) clinic that will be available for use by the public as well as residents. Belzberg Architects’s preliminary designs for the new six-story housing complex is a terraced apartment block whose pixelated, multi-planar facades step back from each street line to create terraces, balconies, and overhangs. Some of these areas turn the building’s corners, creating wrap-around mezzanines and loggia in a series of compositions that also include large, punched openings denoting individual apartment units. The similarly-variable ground level storefronts aim to activate the street while a rooftop terrace overlooks everything below. This approach mirrors LAJH’s Playa Vista outpost where neighborhood amenities include a library, gym, and community gathering spot. Evidently, the senior housing services provider is making a bet toward mixed-use development in an effort to keep its residents integrated with the wider community, and vice versa. According to materials released by LAJH, the mixed-use design aims to alleviate high rates of loneliness among the elderly population. The project’s public profile will surely get a boost from the P.A.C.E. clinic that both residents and community members age 55 and older will be able to use. The complex also contains a two-level, 137 stall parking garage. A timeline for construction has not been announced.
UCLA Architecture and Urban Design’s new campus at the Hercules Hangar in Playa Vista has been a great success. Now we hear from a source that the school is looking to design an addition to its Perloff Hall in Westwood. Whispers say that the designer will be the campus architect, which probably wouldn’t make the school’s talented architects very happy. Stay tuned for a potential gossip blockbuster.