Archinect
Luis Alonso Torres

Luis Alonso Torres

Los Angeles, CA, US

 

About 

Currently I am working as a free-lance designer with projects mostly in South Los Angeles.  These projects have kept me active with code, city and various regulations that I will need as soon as re-enter the architect's work force. I am an independent person who seeks out anything architecture-related. My wife and my three boys keep me active and I enjoy all the time spent with them. Recently we purchased a house in the Gramercy Park district of South Los Angeles; the intention (like most young designers) was to buy a fixer-upper and design-build and that's exactly what we did. I consider myself a self-motivated, hard working individual and my passion and love (aside from family) is architecture. _LAT

Elsewhere:

Employment 

Gary Kanda & Associates, Rosemead, CA, US, Project Designer

Project designer for various restaurant T.I.'s all around Los Angeles and Orange Counties. Involved from client ideas (schematic) to permit process and construction. This office carries a Design-Build philosophy; taking a project from inception to turn key. In the short time I've been here I've been part of more than 10 different projects varying from simple T.I.'s to complete Design_build. _LAT

Oct 2013 - current
 

L.A.T. Design Studio, South Los Angeles, CA, US, Free-Lance Designer

As a free-lance designer I've had the privilege of running my own business. This involves all aspects of the project; from contract negotiation to construction management. Since my first project in April 2006 I have learned hands on what it means to 'go to the city' and be the person who acts on behalf of the owner. I've learned how to manage a client who wants a simple addition or one who wants to design their dream home. Coming up with original details and new innovative ideas has been the most inspirational part of this experience. I have worked side by side with engineers and contractors in all aspects and in all phases of a project. For this I consider myself to have a step up from others who haven't had the opportunity to experience this up close and personal, yet I understand that I have lots still to learn.

May 2006 - current
 

Department of City Planning, City of Los Angeles: Office of Historic Resources, Los Angeles, CA, US, Getty Multicultural Intern

This was a truly unique experience where I learned aspects of the field that I had no idea existed. First of all I had the privilege of working with the city architect, as well as many other talented fields of study such as Urban Planning, GIS, Public Policy. My boss was the Deputy Manager in charge of the SurveyLA: The Los Angeles Historic Resources Survey which is an ongoing project funded by the J. Paul Getty Trust. I was able to enter parts of the city that many don't know exist, as well as read and study plans and EIR's for projects in the City of Los Angeles that no one else, but in office staff know about. I had gained a love for historic buildings in school, but this internship made me realize from a deeper level what an 'old' building signifies trough the Citywide Historic Context Statement which provides the guidelines for each potential Historic Cultural Monument. This was a paid position made possible by the Getty Scholarship Foundation.

Jul 2010 - Aug 2010
 

Obelisk Architects, Torrance, CA, US, Designer

This was my first office I had the opportunity to work in, as well as a glimpse at what it would mean to be an active practitioner. Obelisk Architects was the dream office to work for. Architect Nagy Bakhoum is a knowledge filled individual who I tried to learn from as much as I could in my short stay in his office. He gave me the opportunity to do my first project, my first set of plans and my first project submittal to the city (even if it was for the bathroom remodel for the local church). I was given sketch drawings, client changes and red-lines to work on and all these small tasks were all new to me at the time and today they come and go from project to project. Although the projects in a larger office will overshadow such residential projects this place gave me the foundation for what it means to work in an office scenario.

Jan 2006 - Jul 2006
 

Education 

California State Polytechnic University, Pomona, Pomona, BArch, Environmental Design

Cal Poly Pomona, College of Environmental Design helped strengthen my love for architecture during the five years I spent there. Through the guidance and knowledge of the qualified staff I learned the importance of Architectural Theory and History, Human Behavior, Programming, Sustainability, Building Technology, Structures, Codes and in various Digital Media. _LAT

Jul 2006 - Jul 2010
 

North China University of Technology, Beijing, CN, Architecture Design & Technology

This interdisciplinary study abroad program is designed to learn the history of an ancient civilization that has morphed into a diverse country. With a modern infrastructure, political and a science and technology driven economy China has become the superpower in many aspects. it's architecture has definitely left a mark with buildings such as the CCTV Towers and the brilliantly designed Olympic Village.

Jul 2008 - Aug 2008
 

Los Angeles Harbor College, Wilmington, Architecture Design & Technology

This is the place where I learned all the fundamentals of what architecture is all about, as well as receiving all my general requirements in order to transfer to a University level degree.

Jan 2002 - Jul 2006
 

Awards 

Planning Achievement; Academic Award of Merit - Local + State, Award

This award was given to the school for their active inter-disciplinary program in China for the years of 2010-2011. During this time I was an active student in the program where we traveled the province of China to study the diverse culture, the phenomenal architecture, it's people and of course the history. While I understand that a trip to Europe would have been en equally astonishing program China gave us our moneys worth. We learned, through architectural designs for a progressive Hutong District, what it means to live in China today and it what it could be like to live there in the future as the country undergoes drastic change in the 21st century.

2011
 

Mel Ferris Scholarship, 2nd Place

The scholarships are awarded to qualified architecture students studying at one of California’s ten accredited architectural programs based upon academic and design achievements. I was extremely happy to win 2nd place out of of hundreds of competitors from all design schools in California. Scholarship programs like this are what motivates a student who comes from a struggling low-income neighborhood to push himself to be the one to make it.

2009
 

Lowe's Inc. Scholarship: Hispanic Scholarship Fund, Scholarship

Since the beginning of my studies in the filed of architecture I knew that I wanted to focus myself on improving our communities. For this I decided to make my projects with an emphasis on urban landscape and human behavior. In fact, my senior project project was the design of SLACC: The South Los Angeles Community Center. It was composed of several sports facilities, as well as urban spaces and function areas for 'hang-out'. Community involvement also meant enrolling and getting to meet one of my most inspirational professors at Cal Poly who introduced me to Corazon (http://www.corazon.org/index.php/en/) for which I designed a house and won Honorable Mention in several competitions; in fact it was that project submittal that got me this scholarship. I am truly grateful to her and to Corazon.

2009
 

Areas of Specialization 

Skills 



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