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The Children’s Bureau
Los Angeles, CA

Team

Frank Clementi
Mark Rios
Bob Hale
Samantha Harris
Naseema Asif
John Fishback
Randy Walker
Viltis Januta
Chris Adamick

Categories

Architecture
Education
Graphics
Interiors
Landscape
Children’s Bureau of Southern California is a 100-year-old non-profit leader in the treatment and prevention of child abuse and neglect. With the desire to add a pre-school, playground, community meeting room, medical clinic, legal services, and financial counseling to the existing family counseling services, CBSC purchased a vacated tilt-up warehouse to house their new facility.

Our design challenge was to break down the existing obdurate concrete volume to the human scale in a humble and economical way. Sawcut patterns in the facades punched out windows, bringing light into the pre-school and tenant areas, and provided a grid for the striping pattern which alternates blue, orange and taupe paint with the exposed natural concrete. Visible from the street, the pre-school’s eight classrooms are organized alongside the building’s western side, spilling out to the adjacent courtyard and playground.

Under soaring interiors, the elongated, one-level, 60,000-square-foot center was built out with an industrial-pragmatic approach, combined with select domestic touches using both off-the-shelf interior finishes and bold graphics. A central “cloud chamber” ushers natural light from a series of skylights into the main lobby, conference rooms and office area. Since the office area was also not able to have views to the outside, a perimeter storefront system was finished out with custom leaf and flower patterned wallpaper and natural woods, to bring warmth to the space.

Straddled between multi-cultural neighborhoods just west of downtown, the project is meant to be a welcoming destination for the surrounding community to make their own, as well as a catalyst for further economic investment in the area.
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