National Council of Structural Engineers Associations Structural Engineering Excellence Awards, the highest accolade in the structural engineering industry, honored LPA’s structural engineering team for creativity and achievement in the design of a new West Hollywood recreation center and the seismic retrofit of University of California San Diego’s York Hall.
NCSEA describes the West Hollywood Aquatics and Recreation Center (ARC) established a new center for social and recreational activity in West Hollywood, meeting the needs of an extremely diverse community on a constrained site. LPA’s structural design forms the backbone of a unique, vertically stacked program, which uses structural steel to suspend two rooftop swimming pools above a multi-sport gym without the need for columns. The building’s identifying feature, a monumental stair, connects the ARC to West Hollywood Park and helps to create valuable new park space for the community.
Structural innovations were critical to the project’s success. A 15-foot by 4-foot “mega-truss” between the two pools limits the two-way truss span, saving steel. The upper levels of the building cantilever 30 feet over the roadway, linking the rooftop pool and tennis courts to the open space of the community park through raised observation and recreation decks. The seventy-foot-long stair structure is seismically independent of the building, relying on a large horizontally cantilevered steel truss to anchor the base of the grand stair.
The ARC is a new 75,000-square-foot space overlooking the heart of West Hollywood Park, adjacent to West Hollywood Library. With its exuberant design, the ARC has been envisioned as a gathering space for a range of community gatherings, special events, sports activities, and recreation programs. On four levels with a grand stairway entrance from the park or by elevator access from parking levels off of El Tovar Place, the ARC features two gleaming rooftop swimming pools with captivating views. There is a large-scale multi-sport court that accommodates a variety of indoor sports such as basketball, volleyball, and dodgeball. The ARC also features five community meeting rooms and one conference room in addition to offices for staff from the City’s Recreation Services Division, a Tiny Tot program classroom, and a public access TV studio.