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VA Sepulveda Medical Center
North Hills, CA

Team

Mark Rios
Polly Furr

Categories

Awards
Civic
Landscape
A 200,000 square foot Ambulatory Care Center is built on a 450,000 square foot site. As project landscape architects, we developed 220,000 square feet of entry and drop-off space, plaza, and planting area. Entry and circulating drives created a bilaterally symmetrical, bell shaped site bisected north to south by an existing Campus axis.

As Veterans enter the site and park their cars, they are directed to a central plaza space by rows of Eucalyptus that begin in parking islands. The plaza engages pedestrians with bosques of trees, ornamental planting, benches, and patterned paving, creating comfortable spaces for walking, resting, visiting, or eating lunch. Seating /resting areas are very important to this site since a great majority of the patients are elderly or handicapped and may need breaks on their way to and from the Clinic.
To the north, the plaza is bordered by an amphitheater created from terraces of patterned colored concrete and shaded with large specimens of Ficus rubiginosa. This gathering space is designed from several smaller forms so that it can accommodate the entire staff for a meeting or public event yet, because of its sculptural nature, does not seem empty when occupied by only a few.

To the south, the clinic provides a permeable "edge" to the plaza, with interior paving patterns linking to or matching exterior paving. The Clinic's atrium space is designed as an extension of the plaza, and paving connections and trees carry patterns from the plaza into the building to provide spatial definition and privacy for pharmacy and clinic waiting areas. This continuity of patterning assists in orientation and way finding and minimizes the separation between inside and out.
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