Hoover and Adams Charter School
Arch 505a, Professor Andrew Atwood
University of Southern California, Fall 2010
The Hoover and Adams Charter School is a polite addition to the University Park neighborhood. Employing soft curves and view corridors, the design welcomes students and the community alike within the site. The project is sunken nearly a full floor below grade in order to provide a means of containment and fluidity along the Hoover and Adams thoroughfares, and through this it develops an intricate system of vertical circulation to direct occupants between the entry and ground levels. Furthermore, a central atrium acts as a primary gathering space and circulatory device connecting views within the project and also to the exterior. A shading system is employed to direct entry and inform decisions of clerestory apertures on the second levels while also forming handrail conditions. A green and habitable roof also allows for extra programmable space to accompany the four separate playgrounds contained on grade and provide views down Adams and Hoover respectively.
Entry into the school occurs midway along the south side of the site from Adams. Visitors cross a bridge that splits in two segments and pass above a playground on the floor below. Across the bridge, the visitors pass through an open air control and security area before proceeding through to the interior courtyard. From inside the courtyard, corridors frame views of the exterior. The courtyard also acts as a giant light well, providing daylighting for the classrooms and ancillary spaces on the ground level. On the roof level, accessible via a courtyard staircase, three angular projections interrupt the green roof surface. These projections create clerestory conditions for the entry level below, allowing natural light to enter the library, and four separate classrooms. On the ground level you can find the more public spaces that can require spill-out or exterior programmable space. These spaces include a large multipurpose room (complete with stage and seating), an adjacent cafeteria and eating space (accompanied by a northern facing skylight to allow the entry of indirect sunlight), several accessory spaces (art, music, theatre, etc), and a daycare space (it also doubles as a community clinic).
The design is organized to support existing networks and provide a meaningful environment for learning and community development while retaining and propagating safety for children and adults alike. Furthermore, the intent was to establish an unassuming attitude and contributing aesthetic to the already eclectic University Park neighborhood.
Status: School Project
Location: Los Angeles, CA, US