Hancock Park

Standing at the southeast corner of Hancock Park, this restroom and vending facility was designed for the Los Angeles County Museum of Art and the Natural History Museum. Situated in a grove of trees, the building allows for a continuous feeling of connection with its surroundings. The solid, smooth-troweled plaster walls mimic the fossilized skull and skeleton of a living creature. Each mass provides built-in concrete bench seating areas as well as an enclosure for the necessary programs. The lightweight, translucent panel roof allows for an abundance of natural light, as well as a view of the surrounding trees. These plastic roof panels were proven essential for the design, and a modification to the building code was granted to facilitate their use. The panels sit atop an open framed trellis structure that becomes a vertebrae tying the entire structure together.

Designed as an open air structure, the building takes advantage of natural ventilation as well as sunlight, dismissing the need for a mechanical system and greatly reducing the amount of artificial light needed by such a building. The materials include the use of integrally pigmented, smooth-troweled stucco, natural Douglass fir, sandblasted glass, concrete, and translucent plastic glazing. The building becomes an environmentally responsible and efficient space, allowing for a long life span through lasting materials and other more modular and replaceable elements.

Location: Los Angeles, CA 

Completed: 1998