Natural History Museum of Los Angeles County

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Natural History Museum of Los Angeles County
Natural History Museum of Los Angeles County
Los Angeles, California

"Steven Holl’s approach to the new museum project demonstrates a respect for the historic integrity of the original building and a deep understanding of the complex programmatic needs of the new space." - 
Jane Pisano (President and Director Natural History Museum)
The Natural History Museum of Los Angeles County have announced the selection of New York based architect Steven Holl to partner with the Museum on a multi-year, multi-phase project that will combine new construction with portions of its historically significant structures, including the complete restoration and seismic retrofit of the Museum’s original 1913 Beaux Arts inspired building. The final decision was based on Steven Holl’s past work and conceptual ideas.

"In each project, we seek new ways to integrate an organizing idea with the programmatic and functional essence of a building. Rather than a "style" carried to different sites and climates, or pursued regardless of different programs, we seek the unique character of a program and site, local and global, as the starting point for an architectural idea."
 - Steven Holl
The renovation and expansion project proposes the reconstruction of the existing 410,000 square foot building, including selective replacement of portions of the structure, renovation of remaining historic portions, and the preservation of the nationally registered original 1913 Museum building. In addition, 80,000 square feet of off-site facilities will be relocated to the Museum’s 14-acre site in Exposition Park. The structural flexibility of the design will enable the Museum to present up-to-the-minute exhibitions that explore today’s critical issues. The Museum and Holl will work together to formulate an approach to the new Natural History Museum, to be fully developed and refined over the next several years, which will creatively integrate the institution’s past with its future. The design will create new exhibition and programming space that takes full advantage of contemporary technologies while also addressing serious seismic issues, and replacing aging and inadequate facilities.

"We want to realize together the Museum’s desire to be a different kind of natural history museum. The architectural design of the new museum will support a reorganization of the Museum’s extraordinarily rich collection in a conceptual way so that exhibitions can draw from cultural and natural sciences simultaneously and create a dynamic learning experience for visitors."
 - Steven Holl

The new Natural History Museum of Los Angeles County will be the architectural and cultural cornerstone of historic Exposition Park; the 160-acre public recreation area located just south of Downtown. The Park is also the home of the California Science Center, the California African-American Museum, the historic Los Angeles Memorial Coliseum, the Exposition Park Intergenerational Center, the Los Angeles Memorial Sports Arena and the 15-acre Rose Garden. The Park borders the campus of the University of Southern California on its northern edge and is surrounded on the other three sides by diverse residential communities.
A Master Plan for the redevelopment of the Exposition Park was created in 1992 by Zimmer Gunsul Frasca Partnership. During the past 10 years more than $450 million has been committed to fund various projects that contribute to the ongoing revitalization of the area. Projects include the recently reopened Frank Gehry designed Air and Space Gallery of the California Science Center and architect Thom Mayne’s conversion of the Exposition Park Armory into a K-5 elementary school and center for science learning for the LAUSD and California Science Center. Completion of the Master Plan for the new $200-million to $300-million Museum is projected for 2003, with the unveiling of the schematic design slated for 2004. Groundbreaking will begin in 2006, with a projected first-phase completion date of 2009.


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Building Activity

  • primitivehut
    primitivehut commented
    This project was never built. The museum couldn't raise the funds.
    about 7 years ago via iPhone