Archive for ‘RTKL’

September 25, 2011

LA Sports and Entertainment District Master Plan | RTKL

L.A. rejuvenated by RTKL district masterplan

In the 1990s, downtown Los Angeles suffered from a declining urban population, disinvestment in the urban core, and rising social inequity. Consequently, a progressive group of leaders came together to effect positive change.

The RTKL-master planned, 33-acre area now known as the L.A. Sports and Entertainment District (LASED) is a result of that effort; sited on a former blighted industrial area adjacent to the convention center and downtown’s South Park district, a public/private partnership was formed in 1997 between a master developer (AEG), the City of Los Angeles, and the Community Redevelopment Agency of Los Angeles (CRA/LA) with the shared goals of creating a new sports and entertainment district with an arena for L.A.’s five major sports teams; extensive improvements to district infrastructure and community services programmes; a master plan for a mixed-use district encompassing an expanded convention centre, convention hotel, residential, offices, entertainment, and restaurants in a pedestrian-orientated urban format; and a one-acre plaza for year-round events.

Significant public outreach determined that in addition to the goals stated, RTKL’s master plan would include a community benefits programme offering jobs outreach, wage requirements, small business assistance, and childcare services. Phase one of the project was the design and construction of the Staples Center, a 20,000-seat arena completed in 1999. Phase 2 is L.A. Live, master planned by RTKL and completed in 2010. With the popular NOKIA Plaza at the heart of the project, L.A. Live is a vibrant retail and entertainment district.

The impact of the LASED has been significant and measurable. The adjoining South Park district, once a high-crime area, is now a viable neighbourhood with over 3000 new housing units and numerous retail, office, and hotel developments. Staples Center is a premier venue and LA Live has won critical acclaim and community acceptance, hosting major events like the X Games and the Grammys. To date, over $2.5bn has been invested in the area, but the most significant impact has been in the development of a sustainable, mixed-use community in downtown LA.

February 7, 2011

U.S. Capitol Visitor Center | RTKL

Washington, DC

As the seat of the nation’s legislative branch, the U.S. Capitol is one of the most recognizable and visited historic buildings in the world. RTKL was commissioned to design a 580,000 SF multi-function facility, the largest single building effort constructed on the grounds of the U.S. Capitol. While officially called the U.S. Capitol Visitor Center, it encompasses not only visitor screening and orientation functions, but also several other components critical for the operations of the U.S. Capitol. With knowledge garnered from a dozen years of work with the Architect of the Capitol, RTKL designed a facility that enhances visitor reception experience and education, strengthens building security and the U.S. Capitol’s functionality while preserving an atmosphere of free public access for the more than three million visitors who tour the U.S. Capitol annually.

U.S. Capitol Visitor Center – Building Information

Project: U.S. Capitol Visitor Center
Location: Washington, DC
Services: Architecture, Structural Engineering, Telecommunications, MEP Engineering, interior Architecture, Landscape Architecture, Historic Preservation, Environmental Graphic Design, Audio-Visual, Security Design

photographs © Whitcomb & Maxwell MacKenzie