LOCATION: West Hollywood, CA, United States PROGRAM: Billboard Infrastructure STATUS: Completed in 2014 TEAM: Lorcan O'Herlihy (Principal), Nick Hopson (PM) PHOTOGRAPHY: Lawrence Anderson
LOHA was commissioned by The City of West Hollywood to reconsider the billboard structure for a prominent location along Los Angeles’ Sunset Strip. A trailblazing public-private collaborative effort between The City, advertising stakeholders, and LOHA yielded this new structure which paves the way for future interpretations on the themes of advertising and voyeurism historically associated with this stretch of road.
Replacing an existing billboard, LOHA’s project is situated at a prescribed site on its lot. The brief required a post supporting two signs angled to produce optimal sight lines for drivers moving either east or west along Sunset or those approaching from the south.
The organic wishbone form was generated within locational constraints to realize necessary functions, while refusing a precedent for rigid form and perpendicular angles. The convention of tubular design became a departure point; 90% of the structure’s form comprises straight tubular runs. Structural and fabrication complexities were tackled to achieve the sinuous bends and internally reinforced switchbacks that ultimately ease into two horizontal cantilevers bearing one sign each.
The new billboard is a refreshing sight along the cluttered artery of The Sunset Strip. It soars cleanly over storefronts and appears to project itself into the airspace above the sidewalk. Its cobalt-blue color, chosen from an array of options provided by The City, creates an optimistic link to the sky and its meandering shape imitates the snaking movement of the traffic that passes below.