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March 29, 2006 - The Pacific Design Center

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The Pacific Design Center, Cesar Pelli

From Frommers


The bold architecture and overwhelming scale of the Pacific Design Center, designed by Argentinean architect Cesar Pelli, aroused controversy when it was erected in 1975. Sheathed in gently curving cobalt-blue glass, the seven-story building houses more than 750,000 square feet of wholesale interior-design showrooms and is known to locals as "the Blue Whale." When the property for the design center was acquired in the 1970s, almost all of the small businesses that lined this stretch of Melrose Avenue were demolished. Only Hugo's Plating, which still stands in front of the center, successfully resisted the wrecking ball. In 1988, a second boxlike structure, dressed in equally dramatic Kelly green, was added to the design center and surrounded by a protected outdoor plaza.


A page at Pacific Design Center website mentions the pedestrian bridge, design by Gruen Associates - opened in March 1991 to connect the sixth floors of each center. The site plan calls for a third phase, Center Red, consisting of 400,000 square-feet, but there's no construction date yet.

The blue and green buildings are at 8687 Melrose Avenue, down in West Hollywood. A short drive for some color studies. All photos Tuesday, March 21, 2006, late afternoon.

The Pacific Design Center, Cesar Pelli

The Pacific Design Center, Cesar Pelli

The Pacific Design Center, Cesar Pelli

The Pacific Design Center, Cesar Pelli

Basically the place is filled with furniture stores - custom, exclusive stores with one-of-a-kind items, many of which will sent you back tens of thousands of dollars a pop - but furniture stores nonetheless. That's why they have this big chair out front.

The Pacific Design Center, Cesar Pelli

But it's just California, palm trees and all.

The Pacific Design Center, Cesar Pelli

And it is very blue.

The Pacific Design Center, Cesar Pelli

Oh, and they added something.  The Museum of Contemporary Art is there now too, its third branch, for design and architecture –

MOCA at the Pacific Design Center, West Hollywood

If you use any of these photos for commercial purposes I assume you'll discuss that with me.  

There is a copyright notice at the bottom of this page, of course.

These were shot with a Nikon D70 – lens AF-5 Nikor 18-70mm 1:35-4.5G ED

They were modified for web posting using Adobe Photoshop 7.0

The original large-format raw files are available upon request.


Copyright 2003, 2004, 2005, 2006 - Alan M. Pavlik

The inclusion of any text from others is quotation for the purpose of illustration and commentary, as permitted by the fair use doctrine of U.S. copyright law.  See the Legal Notice Regarding Fair Use for the relevant citation.
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