John Friedman Alice Kimm Architects
1461 E 4th Street
Los Angeles, CA 90033
213 253 4740
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c. JFAK, 2020
Housing the Elderly: Located at a busy intersection in the Koreatown neighborhood of Los Angeles, this mixed-use project contains 6,000 square feet of commercial space and forty-seven units for low-income seniors to live in a safe, dignified environment. Involving the weaving together of an existing three-story brick structure with a new five-story component directly behind it, the project was built for $78 per square foot.
Chaotic Context: Taking cues from the ad hoc context of warehouses, billboards, and traffic lights, the project combines a strong, sculptural form with sensitive articulation that addresses its smaller neighbors. The new and existing structures are mediated by a shared circulation tower and an adjacent slot of space that allows residents to view the street life below.
Safe Haven: Located with security in mind, a central courtyard sits on the second floor of the project, above ground level parking, the manager’s office, and a lobby. Serving as the communal heart of the project, this courtyard includes a community room and laundry facilities. The project is punctuated by many other spaces that encourage the residents to interact with each other, including widened walkway areas and a peaceful roof terrace with framed views of the surrounding city.
Color: The strong massing of the project is tempered by the playful use of color. These colors are derived from a palette known in Korea as Danchung, which features the oranges, reds, blues, and greens found in traditional temple painting and decoration.