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As L.A. Stadium Mega-Project Goes for Final Approval, Architects Slam Design

As L.A.'s massive downtown stadium and convention center project hurtles towards final approval, the questions regarding its design and feasibility grow to a roar.
September 28, 2012, 7am PDT | Jonathan Nettler | @nettsj
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Today, L.A.'s City Council is set to consider final approval for a plan to build an NFL stadium, and undertake renovations to the city's neighboring convention center, being pushed by developer AEG. Although approval is seemingly a fait accompli, news that a "Vision Team" of architects handpicked by Mayor Villaraigosa to evaluate the project's design delivered a stinging report that has been ignored by the city is adding to the growing uncertainties surrounding the project.

Just last week it was revealed, quite stunningly, that the company spearheading the project has put itself up for sale.

According to Dakota Smith, "[w]hile the stadium design faced some criticism from the Vision Team, the most radical suggestion was reserved for the hall," which the report concluded has major flaws.

"'This is not good city design,' Norman Millar, president of the Burbank-based Woodbury University School of Architecture, and one of the Vision Team members, said in an interview this week. 'Plain and simple. It's a no-no.'" 

"Seen as unrealistic because of budget constraints and the project's fast timeline, city planning officials never presented the recommendations to move or redesign the hall to the full Planning Commission, which signed off on the project at its meeting two weeks ago." 

"'Villaraigosa knows this is his legacy,' said [Vision Team member Joseph] Coriaty, expressing concern that the convention center and the stadium 'just slam up next to each other' in the design."

"But the city is going to live with this, and it's a missed opportunity."


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Published on Wednesday, September 26, 2012 in Daily News
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