Thursday, May 12, 2016

Our Choice for the Winner in the Pershing Square Renew Design Competition: James Corner Field Operations with Fredrick Fischer and Partners

Here at the Pershing Square Restoration Society, we look to the great design of the past to see what is possible for the Pershing Square of the future. We know it is unlikely that John Parkinson's 1910 plan for the park will be recreated exactly as the great Los Angeles architect made itfor even Parkinson himself returned to the park two decades later to refine and improve the space. Los Angeles changes, and our public space does, too.

Four potential Pershing Square redesigns have been presented to the people of Los Angeles, and they were asked to vote on them; 1359 did. A jury then made their own determinations and selected a winner. The announcement will be made at 9 o'clock this morning.

We were encouraged to see that three of the four designs directly referenced John Parkinson's Pershing Square, the design that has inspired 2144 people to sign our restoration petition, and whose comments we shared in our open letter to all semi-finalists.

But there is one design in the competition that stands far above the others: James Corner Field Operations with Fredrick Fischer and Partners.

The design respectfully reflects past iterations of the great park, while tastefully responding to the new commercial demands of the competition. While we would like to see more benches and shade along the walkways and a more traditional central water feature with some height, cascading water levels and places for people to sit around it, and the the restoration of the historic sculptures to their traditional places in the park grounds, this entry shows a park that is worthy of the name Pershing Square.

We hope the competition judges see this, too.

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