LAUSD Edward Roybal Learning Center
Los Angeles, CA
The landscape for LAUSD’s Edward Roybal Learning Center adds 315 trees to the 25-acre site and includes a baseball field, a softball/multi-purpose field, basketball and handball courts, and a running track. Our office integrated and reinterpreted man-made elements from the site’s past by reclaiming unused building materials that were still on hand from the abandoned Belmont development era more than a decade earlier. Recycled split-face concrete masonry units form benches and walls that define a number of “outdoor classrooms” in which ERLC students can attend lessons or socialize during recess. These sustainable learning and communal areas underscore the site’s environmental renewal as well as its role in giving a fresh start to the surrounding neighborhood.
We chose plantings to echo the patchwork of green, white, yellow, and beige tones used on the school buildings. These colors also effortlessly summon up the palette of Southern California’s native desert landscape. A series of angled walkways connect the campus’ various green spaces and gathering areas. A large central quadrangle, sizable enough for school-wide functions like graduation ceremonies, serves as a welcoming village green. It also acts as a natural visual divider between the site’s lower-lying, streamlined new buildings, and its stockier, renovated structures.