KIDS HUB OPENING

On September 12, 2018, the LCDG-designed pediatric clinic celebrated it’s opening.  Supervisor Mark Ridley-Thomas joined with leaders from Harbor-UCLA Medical Center and the Department of Health Services to cut the ribbon on the newly constructed KIDS Hub Clinic at Harbor-UCLA Medical Center. The KIDS Hub provides services to children from birth through age 18 who are involved with the Department of Children and Family Services (DCFS). It is part of a Los Angeles County Department of Health Services network of Hub clinics, designed to serve this particularly vulnerable population.

The KIDS Hub provides state-of-the-art expert assessment while reducing trauma to the child victims and their families and evaluates. “The expert medical, forensic evaluations and developmental assessments we provide to identify child abuse and neglect for children involved with DCFS, are key to identifying and protecting at-risk children,” said Kelly Callahan, MD, KIDS Hub Medical Director.

LCDG has created a warm, safe, home-like setting for traumatized kids.  The clinic includes five exam rooms, two interview/observation rooms, a mental health room, a large charting room, plus support spaces.  Walls were relocated, and finishes, HVAC and electrical replaced.  The 30-year old developer-built medical facility consists of nearly 50 factory-built trailers, grouped around two courtyards.  While it appears to be a normally constructed building, the trailers are registered with the DMV. 

AIA EMBRACES DESIGN-BUILD

 (right to left) Slavko Vukic - LCDG; Harry Drake - Gonzalez Goodale; Betty Lynn Senes – Sundt; Joe O’Hara – CSUN; Alix O” Brien – LAUSD; Vincent Yu – LA County.

(right to left) Slavko Vukic - LCDG; Harry Drake - Gonzalez Goodale; Betty Lynn Senes – Sundt; Joe O’Hara – CSUN; Alix O” Brien – LAUSD; Vincent Yu – LA County.

LCDG Project Architect Slavko Vukic, AIA, and DBIA member was an active panelist at an American Institute of Architects event September 26th at the historic South Pasadena Public Library. The well-attended program attracted design professionals, public clients, contractors, construction managers, and representatives of the Design-Build Institute of America.

“As we at LCDG hold trust in high regard, we also value design-build partnerships because they too are built on trust. We put our trust in our contractor partners, so they may put their trust in us.”

- Slavko Vukic, AIA


No stranger to design-build project delivery, Slavko shared LCDG’s positive experiences on a new SCE office building in Ridgecrest, and the Las Palmas assisted living facility in Laguna Woods. He emphasized that design decisions are much improved in an architect-contractor partnership, collaborating to find the best value for clients. As a single team, the often-argumentative relations in a traditional design-bid-build form of project delivery are eliminated, bringing huge benefits to owners –- improved design, compressed schedules, and fewer change orders.

Live Oak Public Library Slated for Construction October 2018

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The new 7,500 sf Live Oak Library is conveniently located in suburban Arcadia. The staggered glassy entrances, contrasting with rich wood paneling, welcome the community.  

Interiors are open, sky lit and cheery.  The central service desk connects to the front and rear entrances with a broad pathway.  Spaces within are tailored to the users – children, teens, adults and seniors.  For instance, at the front entrance, teen reading carrels are nested within the staggered glass storefront. A ‘zone of silence’ for small study groups is located in a nearby glass bubble.  

LA County recently purchased the aging private school to replace the crowded existing neighborhood library.  The ambitious project required demolition of the labyrinth-like interiors, and replacement of most building systems.  Long span glulams were revealed spanning the full width of the space and allowing a welcome openness.    

San Fernando Mental Health Center

San Fernando Mental Health Center – ground breaking celebrated January 12, 2018 where LCDG was recognized by the director of LA County Public Works for our efforts in completing this project. 

Purpose: A new County mental health center to serve the nearly 20% of adults in San Fernando Valley that are depressed or are at risk of depression. Over 10% of children are also in need of mental health care.   

Challenge: LCDG evaluated a vacant courthouse annex to determine if adaptive reuse was cost-effective. Given a confined site, new one-story and two-story solutions were also considered. A new one-story center provided the greatest long-term benefits. 

Solution: A new design template demonstrating two key principles, integration of services, and bringing those services to the community. A person’s health and behavioral health issues are intertwined. If a client comes into this facility seeking mental health care, they will also receive a referral for affordable medical care and substance use treatment services as well.   

The one-story, 15,000 sf, $12 million facility has counseling/therapy rooms, group therapy rooms, business offices, and other support spaces. The plan is arranged with counseling rooms adjacent to the lobby, shared spaces at the center of the building, and private administrative areas beyond. Systems furniture provides long-term flexibility for the majority of the open office areas. LCDG prepared the “bridging document”, describing County requirements for design-build entities. 

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Hope Center for Teens

The Hope Center for Teens is a 3-story, 12,000 sf wood frame building built in 1920. 

Purpose: Bring together all the services needed to keep high-risk children off the streets, identify safe housing, and help them transition into an adult world where they can live independent productive lives.

Challenge: The building had been vacant for an extended period due to numerous code violations and aging building systems, including deficient exiting, fire protection, MEP systems, and accessibility.  

Solutions: A new tower was added at the entry of the building for an elevator, stairs, and MEP systems. New restrooms are centrally located on each floor. High-activity reception areas are on the first floor, counseling on the second, and private administration on the third.   

Rob Lawson Helped Wildfire Victims

The wildfires in Sonoma and Napa counties last month blackened approximately 110,000 acres and destroyed over 4,500 homes and businesses. The toll on local residents and their extended families is immeasurable. 

LCDG’s Vice President, Rob Lawson, served as a volunteer disaster worker in and around the wine country of Santa Rosa. As an evaluator with the CalOES Safety Assessment Program, Rob assisted the Sonoma County Building Department evaluating fire damaged buildings. Tasked in areas near the edges of the fire area, he visited approximately 120 properties that week, assessing the condition of homes and secondary buildings.

Depending on the severity of damage, the buildings were tagged with red, yellow or green placards, indicating whether or not they were safe to enter or only safe enough to retrieve belongings. The condition of the structures were then compiled and given to the Building Department to be used in assisting property owners as they begin to rebuild.

 classroom foundation
 village men helping the team
 popular pasttime for village kids
 local classroom

Courtney Tossounian Promoted to Associate!

LCDG is pleased to announce Courtney Tossounian’s promotion to Associate. In this capacity, she will serve on the firm’s executive committee, addressing LCDG’s technical and financial progress and plans for the future. Courtney is an exceptional young architect demonstrated by her effective leadership on a new operations building for Edison, two LAUSD HVAC replacement projects, and other challenging projects.

Courtney lives in Hollywood, in a small historic neighborhood called Melrose Hill with her husband and two-year-old daughter. In her spare time she volunteers for the City of Los Angeles as the Melrose Hill Preservation Overlay Zone Board Architect. Courtney also heads the RestauranTOUR series for the AIA Pasadena Foothill Chapter. She loves to cook, host dinner parties, re-finish old pieces of furniture, and go hiking with her family.

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Developing Ghana's Classrooms

Earlier this Fall, LCDG’s Designer, Derik Tom (or Jack, as the locals would call him) volunteered with ARCHITEACH to build a classroom in the Abetenim Arts Village, Ashanti, Ghana. Derik had firsthand experience working with locals in traditional vernacular building techniques. The main challenge was to be as resourceful as possible, while applying modern design concepts to traditional practices. Resources such as wood, metals, and even tools were hard to come by, especially in a village 24 miles away from a major city, many times re-purposing building materials as often as needed.

In the afternoons, after labor intensive mornings, the team would have the opportunity to interact with the locals, play soccer, or explore the neighboring market places. Derik got to experience how vibrant and welcoming the communities of Ghana are.

 classroom foundation
 village men helping the team
 popular pasttime for village kids
 local classroom
 community member weaving kente cloth
 cotton thread used to weave

LAC + USC Medical Center Outpatient Department – Primary Care Adult East Clinic

The LAC+USC Medical Center formally celebrated completion of the newly renovated Primary Care Adult Clinic with the 1st District Supervisor, LAC+USC Interim CEO and other leaders of the Medical Center and Primary Care department. The design reflects the core mission of providing high-quality, cost-effective, patient-centered care. The new clinic has a warm, transparent quality. Patients are greeted at a welcome desk, a centralized waiting room where patients and staff are visible to each other, and registration desks for the north and south clusters of clinical exam rooms. Beyond glass walls on each side of the waiting room are care team rooms, co-located to promote teamwork with resident and attending physicians, CMAs, and Care Managers. A “living room” is conveniently located at the clinic entrance for patents and staff to convene.