LAX


In 1998, the Los Angeles World Airports commissioned a multi-disciplinary team to explore beautification opportunities at Los Angeles International Airport (LAX). The team was led by Ted Tokio Tanaka Architects, and included environmental graphics consultant Selbert Perkins Design, landscape consultant IMA Design Group, Inc., lighting consultant Lighting Design Alliance, art consultant Isenberg & Associates, Inc., and engineering consultant Ove Arup & Partners. The Urban Simulation Team @ UCLA joined the team as simulation consultants.

The project was constructed in two phases. To record the existing condition of the airport, the team first built a model of the Central Terminal Area (CTA) including the terminal buildings, parking structures, roadways, operations facilities, and signage components. The second phase of the project was to model the beautification team's proposed changes. Architecturally, the changes included a canopy to unify the primary elevations of the terminal buildings, sheathing for the bridges between the terminals and the parking structures, and cladding for the underside of the elevated roadway. The new graphics system was modeled using mock-ups from the designers as texture mapping and over-scaled super graphics were built following an easily-identifiable color scheme to aid in way-finding. New landscaping was introduced throughout the airport; the model focused on the changes to the primary airport entrance and in the open areas surrounding the Theme building. Opportunities for public art programming were also highlighted.

The model was used to present the beautification team's ideas to the Los Angeles World Airport's Board of Commissioners and at public meetings held throughout the process. Future long-range airport planning and development efforts will also be able to use the model to explore expansion alternatives as LAX grows to keep pace with the demands of the next century.


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