Los Angeles Open Space Network

LosAngelesOpenSpaceNetwork.jpg
Los Angeles, CA
United States
Los Angeles Open Space Network

An outgrowth of The Maguire Partners 1980 proposal for “A Grand Avenue,” this linear spine designed by Lawrence Halprin and Charles Moore was envisioned as a collection of parks and civic spaces that would be both people-oriented and activity-generating. Although Maguire’s Grand Avenue proposal, which included eleven acres of public spaces, was not realized, it was a foundation for the work over the next twelve years, where Halprin collaborated with architects and artists on four unique public spaces built along Hope Street. Moving north to south these spaces include the Crocker Court (now Wells Fargo Court), Bunker Hill Steps, Library Square (now Maguire Gardens), and Grand Hope Park. These designs are responsive to the topography, embellished with public art, and reflect the environment and cultural context of the region. They also express Halprin’s impressionistic sensibilities about the Southern California landscape and its unique cultural history. Unlike his better-known projects in Northern California and the Pacific Northwest which exhibit his hallmark exuberance and imagery of crashing waterfalls and tumbling streams, Halprin’s use of water in the Los Angeles projects is more subtle, reflective of the region’s drier climate. Postmodern in design, these projects also incorporate abstractions of Spanish Colonial Revival style architecture (e.g. the Tower at Grand Hope Park and the wall at Bunker Hill).