The LA Plaza de Cultural y Artes
Los Angeles, California
The LA Plaza de Cultural y Artes project consists of the historic Vickrey-Brunswig building, the Plaza House, and adjoining two and a quarter acre garden, all of which are located with the El Pueblo de Los Angeles Historic Monument, which is listed on the National Register of Historic Places. The work completed as Rios Clementi Hale Studios and the use of these buildings and gardens for a cultural center was championed by Los Angeles County Supervisor Gloria Molina.
The project consisted of designing a series of garden spaces to enable LA Plaza to meet its goal of celebrating and educating visitors on the Mexican-American influence in Southern California. The Campo Santo Memorial Garden provides both passive and active environments and includes a vegetable and fruit tree garden. Two brightly colored canopy structures provide shade above a stage for outdoor performances and over a patio area. The vibrant colors bring a festive atmosphere to the gardens and also provide a platform for event infrastructure – such as lights, speakers and video screens – to be mounted on for use during events.
California Pepper trees are planted throughout to integrate the site with the existing El Pueblo District. The project planting palette consists of drought tolerant plant material and native species commonly found in the Southern California region. In addition to the gardens, an open lawn area was planted to provide a seating area in front of the event stage. Decomposed granite pathways and concrete pavers surround its perimeter to encourage site circulation.