REGGIE RODRIGUEZ COMMUNITY CENTER
This project was commissioned to revitalize a central location for the at-risk youth population in the City of Montebello, east of downtown Los Angeles. The program included space for four non-profit agencies to provide activities and services for the youth, and a police drop-in station. Two rooftop decks and a multi-purpose room provide areas for community gatherings. The architecture is sited within the 11-acre Reggie Rodriguez Park and is surrounded by a residential area. This contemporary community center was conceived of as a physical expression of the often perilous passage from adolescence to maturity. A combination of active and reflective experiences are present: from porous public spaces which spill out into the park, to the more introverted and cloistered areas for concentrated work and growth. A seamless concrete surface leading from the outside connects the entry to the park plaza. All circulation is open to the air, increasing the sustainability of the architecture and reducing operating costs for the client. Views extend straight through the building, and at night the light from the lobby filters through the entrance screen, spilling light into the park. During the day the entire facade opens to the park to invite the community to explore the center’s modern public spaces and programs. The award-winning design has been featured in exhibitions and publications in the US and was named one of the Top 100 Community Center design projects in the world.