Tour- LA City Tour - TOUR IS FULL


Grand Patio

  • AIA CEU: 3.75 LU HSW


You must have closed toed shoes on this tour!


1) Venice High School

Currently under construction, the $138M Venice High School Comprehensive Modernization project will transform the campus and provide new buildings that meet the instructional and facility goals of the District. The project reinvents a historic campus from the inside out. The original PWA Modern buildings are preserved while the rest of the aging buildings are replaced in complementary, yet educationally contemporary new structures and landscapes. The new design leverages the open campus culture and temperate climate in conceiving a campus that exploits the potential for fluid relationships between indoor and outdoor learning. A concept of ‘canals and islands’ protect existing plantings in landscape islands while defining new canals of circulation and movement. Several quads are developed for their diverse program requirements of gathering, learning, and circulation.

The tour will go through two of the three primary new buildings that are currently in the final stages of construction. These new classroom buildings take advantage of their relationships to the landscape and leverage the design character of the historic structures. The Science and Engineering Building embraces a new Science Quad and fronts the Venice Community Garden with a patio space extending the lower level classrooms to the exterior while the upper level Chemistry labs access the quad directly via a dynamic exterior stair. The Arts and Shops Building has a number of shops on the ground level including Auto Shop and a unique Print Shop with exterior access to accessory learning areas and Arts Rooms on the upper level claim a long, glassy expanse on the north facade. Special Education programs are located in each of the new classroom buildings allowing for connections to adjacent programs.

OBJ #1   How a comprehensive modernization can transform a campus and support District’s educational vision through the placement of new construction and thoughtful upgrades to existing facilities. This is particularly challenging on a historic campus.
OBJ #2   The value of indoor / outdoor spaces to extend the learning environment and support school identity.
OBJ #3   The logistics of coordinating construction on an existing campus while striving to minimize disruptions to school operations. How to leverage the construction as a learning opportunity through communication and seeking out intersections with curriculum.
OBJ #4   How LAUSD has leveraged the Design Build delivery method to facilitate development of their comp mod program.

2) Foshay Learning Center

HMC was hired by Los Angeles USD to do a master plan for an addition to the school. Foshay’s main campus houses approximately 1,800 grade K-12 students. The goal for the project site development was to remove all portable buildings on the campus to free up more outdoor student gathering areas and open space. Foshay has an interesting educational focus and a strong tie to USC. A number of Foshay classes are rigorous enough to be considered for college credit, and USC offers a scholarship to Foshay students who complete their program and stay at the school. After the master plan was approved, HMC continued with the first several phases of implementation.

OBJ #1  Understanding challenges for campus redevelopment construction on small urban site
OBJ #2  Looking at ways of both separating and integrating students at a K-12 school
OBJ #3  Seeing examples of integrating safe outdoor learning and socialization spaces on a small urban site
OBJ #4  Opportunities for partnerships with higher education institutions

3) Wiseburn USD & Da Vinci Schools

To meet the challenges of a rapidly changing world, educators are exploring a shift toward a more personalized learning experience. Wiseburn USD & Da Vinci Schools is designed to inspire 21st-century learning and to adapt with the change in pedagogy. A reimagined building is designed to be more like a creative workplace than a traditional high school, stacking three independent schools on top of ground-floor shared space. With the openness and flexibility typical of today’s inventive work environments, the school underscores the idea that learning happens at many more places than just the desk.

Learning Objectives:

Explore how the site exists within the commercial city of El Segundo and how this once commercial enclosed building was “hacked” to create an adaptive learning environment. Attendees will also come away with understanding of how the architectural frameworks supports the pedagogy; and experience the variety of spaces that range in size, openness, features and visual character that seeks to personalize learning to individual students – from classrooms, maker, and presentation spaces that are designed for hands-on, project-based learning where students design, build, and prototype their ideas in a collaborative environment.