Juan Ramirez

Juan Ramirez

Norwalk, CA, US



The project is a Music Institute, located in Los Angeles, adjacent to the 10 Santa Monica freeway. As the urban fabric of major cities continues to grow, the negative space created from the freeways needs to become a viable place to inhabit. Yet, the negative space surrounding freeways comes with several issues as it is often either oddly shaped or small, as well as creating a noisy environment due to the freeway. By developing a system that will help the acoustics of a building in such an urban environment, areas near freeways can become a more viable place to live or work. Since the project is a Music Institute, it challenges those issues by introducing an activity generally done in a quiet environment. The site is a thin long rectangular site, located adjacent to the 10 Santa Monica Freeway, intersecting 17th and Main Street. The sun is located on the south side of the site with views towards Downtown Los Angeles on the north side. The noise and sun coming from the south side of the site create an issue, as the building will need to block the sounds from the freeway but also let in natural light into the building. The main concept of the project is to develop a skin that would mitigate the sound produced from the freeway while also remaining transparent to help natural light come into the building. The skin’s convexed shape will help to displace any sounds coming from the freeway. The paneling of the skin will consist of Panelite Acoustic Panels that would absorb the negative sounds produced by the freeway. The panels are honeycombed transparent panels that will let natural light into the building. The structure maintaining the skin up will be a light steel structure that would not interfere with the natural light coming into the building. Any unwanted noise not reflected from these panels would be mitigated by a buffer that will serve as the main circulation. The buffer is encased in glass and the floors have openings, connecting all floors with stairs and creating light wells to maximize the natural light entering through all floors. The wall separating the program from the buffer is an acoustic concrete wall that would reflect any leftover sound that entered the building, making the program’s spaces quiet. In order to have the best sound quality in the program’s spaces but also offer flexibility with seating arrangement, the shapes and sizes of the rooms would be open floor boxed rooms with convex shaped acoustic paneling in the ceiling and wall to help with diffusing the sound. The sound diffusers are angled wood panels that would displace and absorb the sound to provide good sound quality. The walls and ceiling will be covered with these wooden panels and lined with lights for lighting. The sound diffuser will reflect and scatter the sound waves to mitigate echoes. Most classrooms are located next to each other with one wall of separation; therefore, to keep sound from interfering, soundproofing must be implemented. The program consists of an auditorium, classrooms, and offices as they are the most needed essentials for a music school. The ground floor would be accessible to the public with an auditorium in the center of the building, accompanied by a restaurant and bar on each side. The top floors would house the music institute, granting privacy to the students while allowing for the best views and opportunities for socialization. The highest floor would consist of a cafeteria, lounge, and library with the remaining floors being occupied by offices and classrooms. Classroom sizes would vary from medium to large to accommodate orchestra-size classes. Smaller individual rooms will also be provided for students to practice. Storage rooms would be placed on each floor for the storing of student’s instruments. The library would hold books and materials of music history, music theory, and music sheets.

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Status: School Project
Location: 100 W 17th St , Los Angeles, CA 90015