New LEED Gold certified headquarters for the LAPD
The LAPD Police Administration Building in downtown Los Angeles, completed October 2009, was built to replace the nearly 60 year old former headquarters of the LAPD. In designing the replacement for their aging and unsafe headquarters, the main goal of the LAPD was to make manifest their desire for increased transparency while at the same time maintain a secure and safe environment for the building’s users and visitors. Located at the threshold between the civic core and the historic district, the building site offered a unique opportunity to link between the center of government at City Hall, and the growing residential population to the south. At 500,000 sq ft and 10 storeys above grade, the new Police Administration Building responds to the department’s functional needs and also offers the surrounding community much needed public open space throughout the of the site.
Taking advantage of required setbacks and the building’s geometry, each side of the site was given its own character. A terraced civic plaza facing City Hall was made possible by the diagonal geometry of the tower in combination with recessing the main mass of the building. A ‘linear park’ was formed along the west with a group of small scaled seating areas augmented by a series of sculptures. A nearly one acre public park is situated on the south side of the site facing the large residential project across the street. A contemplative rooftop garden is raised above street level on the east side of the site.
In addition, pedestrians are encouraged to travel through the site and under the building along the diagonal path created by the building that visually connects the city’s first cathedral with the city’s newest cathedral. Additional amenities made available to the public are a 200 seat café and a 450 seat auditorium wrapped with art by Catherine Wagner, both situated directly on the Main Street frontage. In essence, the entire site has been turned over to the public, while still maintaining the department’s original goals of security and transparency.