JFAK, along with the Los Angeles Cleantech Incubator (LACI) and Los Angeles Department of Water and Power (LADWP) celebrated the official Grand Opening of the La Kretz Innovation Campus (LKIC), LA's new cleantech hub located in the DTLA Arts District on 5th and Hewitt, where entrepreneurs, engineers, scientists and policymakers collaborate, innovate and contribute to the creation of LA's green economy.
"What’s great about the La Kretz Innovation Campus is that it's a place where community, government, and innovation in the form of technological entrepreneurship are really making a concerted attempt to connect, to find common platforms from which to work towards common aspirations," said Principal Alice Kimm.
The free grand opening event celebrated LA's leadership role in achieving a cleantech future. Mayor Eric Garcetti officiated the ribbon cutting ceremony at 10:30am along with LADWP representatives, philanthropist Morton La Kretz, and notable local innovators. LACI cleantech companies shared their breakthrough sustainability solutions in fast pitch presentations and showcased their technologies at the solar-powered innovation expo. All day, local food trucks, breweries, artists and DJs showcased the diverse and vibrant culture of Los Angeles, and Downtown's Arts District.
Hourly tours brought visitors through the facility features, showing off the office space and amenities. The Campus features collaborative workspace, an Advanced Prototyping Center (including a 3-D printing and laser shop, electronics, robotics and chemistry labs), a training center, amphitheater and event space, in addition to LADWP laboratories and a Case Study Home showcasing energy and water saving products, among other features.
In the afternoon, JFAK Principals John Friedman and Alice Kimm were part of a lecture series, giving a presentation in which they delved into the project's genesis and evolution, entitled Green is the New Black: Designing LKIC for a Resilient Economy.
Alice concluded, "As architects, we do believe that the spaces we help to make, through creative teamwork, do really advance innovation and creativity, do inspire people and the larger communities they are a part of, and do bring beauty and joy to those communities and individuals – at the same time that a conscientious deployment of current technologies helps us to live longer, healthier, and therefore more productive lives."