WALT DISNEY CONCERT HALL
Los Angeles, California
Photo: Whit Preston
Located on a historically and culturally prominent downtown site, the Walt Disney Concert Hall is to become the permanent home of the Los Angeles Philharmonic. The Concert Hall will be situated on historic Bunker Hill at the intersection of First Street and Grand Avenue, adjacent to the existing Music Center of Los Angeles. The 200,000 square foot project began as an invited design competition, during which many of the fundamental design tenets were established. These include an open and accessible main entrance, a sympathetic and inclusive attitude in the building's relationship to the Music Center's existing Dorothy Chandler Pavilion, a pedestrian scale frontage along Grand Avenue, a generous and open backstage area, and a large garden. Many design elements have evolved since the competition, most notably the Hall's shape, the foyer size, and the consideration and subsequent elimination of a chamber hall and a 350-room hotel.
The Concert Hall will be located in the center of the site, which consists of one city block. The majority of the site will be devoted to gardens, accessible not only from the Hall but from the adjacent streets, providing an oasis within the surrounding urban environment. An entry plaza will be located at the comer of First and Grand to relate the facility to the existing Music Center, and a secondary entry plaza will be located at the comer of Second and Grand to provide primary access to the gardens. Unlike most concert halls, the building lobby will be dispersed along the street and will remain open during the day; large operable glass panels will provide maximum accessibility to various amenities including a gift shop, a restaurant and cafe, an underground parking garage, and a preconcert performance space. The preconcert performance space will be used for performance-related lectures, educational programs, and other scheduled and impromptu performances throughout the day.
The focus of the design is the 2,300-seat Concert Hall, whose interior and form are a direct expression of acoustical parameters, resulting in both visual and acoustic intimacy. Wooden seating blocks surround the orchestra platform, and, together with the sail-like wooden ceiling forms, give one the impression of being within a great ship inside the walls of the hall. A pipe organ designed in conjunction with the interiors will occupy a central position between the seating blocks at stage rear. Skylights and a large window at the rear of the Hall will allow natural light to enhance daytime concerts.
The exterior of the Concert Hall will be clad in stainless steel panels and stone. The building's orientation will present highly sculptural compositions as viewers move along Grand Avenue and through the surrounding gardens and plazas. An extensive backstage technical area surrounds the Hall and opens onto a private garden for musicians. The backstage door will open off of a semi-public garden and the largest rehearsal room will be placed near this entry to be used for small scale public performances. The openness of the backstage area is intended to encourage interaction between artists and the public. A 2,500-car garage on six levels will be located below the hall with access from three surrounding streets. Concert goers will arrive in the foyer from the garage by way of an escalator cascade, providing unique opportunities for art installations.
|Client:||Walt Disney Concert Hall Committee|
|Area:||Area: 200,000 square feet|
|Schedule:||Begin Design - 1987
Begin Construction -1999
Expected Completion - 2002
Frank O. Gehry
|- Design Principal
- Project Principal
- Project Manager
- Project Architects
- Project Designers
- Project Team
|- CATIA Modeling|