Culver city, along La Cienega and Washington is a well known hub of galleries. Columbia Records is poised to sit at this junction, connecting a range of galleries in a pedestrian friendly section of the city.
To engage this potential, the new headquarters keep much of the ground level clear, with the building hovering overhead. From this public courtyard extends a gallery type procession, called the Sound Garden which wraps the public around and through the building, giving them a glimpse of the office, performance space and recording studios, as well as a rooftop garden and cafe.
As gallery wanderers pass the corner of La Cienega and Washington, they are drawn in under the belly of Columbia Records new headquarters. Pulled through an open public courtyard to the North East corner of the site, where the sound garden extends, welcoming the public. This path winds first through the office wing, overlooking but not directly interacting with the open layout of the office. The garden is enclosed here, but not completely interior. As we reach the end of the offices we are in an open terrace, overlooking Ballona Creek on one side, and a split view between the performance space below and the recording studios above. Continuing around the building, the path bends to run parallel to La Cienega, with a view of Culver City. Climbing along the buildings edge, the path ends in a cafe and open roof garden.
The building, like the company, maintains an open and interactive relationship with its public audience, while maintaining secure boundaries at strategic points. The building will help Columbia launch a new friendly public image in a time when many think big record labels have reached their final hour.
Status: School Project
Location: Culver City, CA