Roundabouts are all the rage in Europe, but Americans have been slow to adopt this particular form of street design. Despite Los Angeles’s car-centric culture, the glitzy city is no exception, but that might start to change following the success of Riverside Roundabout, a stormwater-retaining traffic island at the intersection of Riverside Bridge, San Fernando Road, and Figueroa Street. The city’s first roundabout definitely brings the spectacle. Greenmeme, a studio working at the intersection of art and architecture, brought nine eye-catching granite sculptures to the site and created a resilient, varied landscape. The egg-shaped pods, ranging from 8 to 12 feet tall, each feature a face from a randomly-chosen local resident. Designers used 3-D scanners to capture the faces of the selected volunteers, and the sculptures bear the likenesses on either side, displaying 18 individuals in total. The sculptures were carved in slices by fabricator Coldspring using a CNC mill, with three sculptures carved from one block of granite. The end result, Faces of Elysian Valley, joins a proud tradition of face-based decorative art. The remaining granite offcuts were used to form a sculptural barricade around the center of the island and protect the “eggs” from traffic. Elongated faces have been stretched into the granite ring as well, creating a perspective trick that reveals undistorted visages as drivers circle the roundabout. Greenmeme worked with Ourston Roundabout Engineering to determine the sculptures’ size constraints, as the team needed to preserve sightlines across the island for drivers without distracting them. In designing the traffic island’s topography, Greenmeme sought to channel stormwater away from the street and adjacent bridge. The landscaped areas have been planted with native plants, and a 25,000-gallon cistern is buried underneath the roundabout, which uses captured rainwater to irrigate the green spaces and feed a water feature. Everything is powered by sun-tracking solar voltaics, including the lights used to illuminate the sculptures at night. The entire roundabout is ringed with permeable green pavers for drivers who need to pull off, and overall the landscape can handle and treat up to 500,000 gallons at a time (a once-every-ten-years rainfall event). Riverside Roundabout and Faces of Elysian Valley opened to the public in February of 2017.
Posts tagged with "Roundabout":
Hospitality design is all about visual impact and physical comfort. From pedigreed modernist classics to eye-popping contemporary works, these pieces will make any lobby or lounge area a memorable space. Jewels Garden Carpet (pictured at top) Moooi Fabricated using the Chromojet high-definition printer, which creates remarkably realistic images, this flamboyant collage of flowers, gemstones, and Madras motifs is definitely lobby-worthy. Designed by Sacha Walckhoff, Christain Lacroix Maison. Toa Ligne Roset The origami-inspired form of this cushy chair can be upholstered in leather for formal settings or cotton or wool for more casual decors. Ash frame, in natural or black stain. Designed by Rémi Bouhaniche. Air Sofa Luteca Its form inspired by structural I-beams, the frame of this sofa appears to float above the floor. Available in eight colors of leather upholstery. Designed by Alexander Andersson. Mixi Modular Watermark Cabinet Fringe Studio The Mixi Modular Watermark Cabinet is a chest of drawers with custom dark brass finished drawer hardware and a corresponding steel base. Mixing the old with the modern, this piece is finished with a printing process that runs fluid across the cabinet in a marbleized vintage book design. Series 7 Chair, 60th Anniversary Edition Republic of Fritz Hansen To mark the sixtieth anniversary of the Series 7™ chair, two special editions of the 3107 chair have been made. The chairs have been created with a masculine or feminine perspective: one with a dark blue shell with powder-coated legs, while the other features a pale pink shell with gold-plated legs. Each piece comes with a golden plate mounted on the bottom of the shell, documenting it as part of the limited release. Available only throughout 2015. Designed by Arne Jacobsen. Roundabout Lina Roundabout is a modular composition of seats/poufs that can be converted into bar stools, coffee tables, or chairs. Attached to one another by flexible joints, these elements can be composed into various compositions without limitation, in rows or clusters that fit in narrow halls or wide spaces. Smart joint elements on the poufs enable rotating one piece around another. Suitable for public places, offices, hotel lobbies or galleries, the collection is made of plywood, fabric covers, and high-density foam.