Today’s college students want the freedom to study, snack, and socialize at any time and anywhere on campus. At UCLA, the newest hot spot for the mobile, wireless-enabled generation is Hedrick Study, located on the ground floor of Hedrick Hall, a 1960s-era high-rise dormitory. With its European-style food hall, cozy fireplace, and variety of comfy seating arrangements, you might mistake it for the lobby of a boutique hotel. “In fact, the Ace Hotel was one of the inspirations for the interior,” says Jim Favaro, principal of Johnson Favaro of Los Angeles, which designed the $9.1 million renovation.

The project replaces a 1990s food-court-style cafeteria that was dying on the vine due to changes in technology and student lifestyles. Hedrick Hall is a hilly, 12-minute walk from UCLA’s central campus to the east; the dorm’s 1,100-plus residents were increasingly staying on campus after classes to mingle with friends and tackle assignments before heading home at night. But the cafeteria closed after traditional dinner hours (read: there was nowhere to satisfy a late-night case of the munchies), and its tables and chairs weren’t conducive to group or solo studying. To bring the large common area back to life, Johnson Favaro envisioned it as a round-the-clock space that functioned as a 24–7 food market and a library without books—and with all the amenities and connectivity expected on today’s campuses.

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The original 22,000-square-foot space had been roughly divided in half, between back-of-house kitchen and openplan cafeteria with seating. Improving the floor plan was the architects’ top priority. “We knew the interior architecture had to drive function here, or else the new space would be as underutilized as the old one,” says Favaro. In lieu of an open plan, the architects crafted a series of interconnected seating and study areas on the eastern side of the footprint that range from quiet to busy, where students can work alone, side by side, or in groups, and socialize during breaks. These areas ring an enclosed central reading room—a nod to traditional library design. The food hall, nestled between the study areas and the revamped kitchen, takes its cues from Italian rosticcerias, French boulangeries, English pubs, and American delicatessens, says Favaro. There students can buy grab-and-go meals, brick-oven pizza, coffee, baked goods, and other snacks and take them right to their seats. The new 7,000-square-foot kitchen supports the food hall and is also the meal-prep center for 13,300 students on UCLA’s food plan.

Furnishings and finishes in warm, textured neutrals lend the interior a vibe that’s inviting and intimate rather than institutional. Johnson Favaro designed the fireplace, fixed furniture, and a few decorative touches such as ceiling treatments and durable, custom-printed floor tiles laid to look like Persian carpets. “Materials in public buildings need to be long-lasting so clients get the best bang for the buck,” says Favaro. “The goal was a luxury feel without the luxury price tag.” Rodrigo Vargas Design helped the firm select furnishings and designed some custom pieces.

Since opening in January 2017, Hedrick Study serves about 3,000 students per day, and twice that number when final exams roll around. As hoped, it’s buzzing at all hours, and many dorm residents return from campus right after classes so they can snag their favorite seats and stay there for the rest of the day. “It’s like a communal living room,” says Favaro. For these students, there’s no place like home—especially if it comes with great grub and high-speed Internet.



Johnson Favaro, 5898 Blackwelder Street Culver City, CA 90232, 3105595720,


Personnel in architect's firm who should receive special credit:

Steve Johnson, Jim Favaro, Brian Davis, Kathy Williams, Ingrid Dennert, Chris Rallo, Peter Moerland


Architect of record: Johnson Favaro, 5898 Blackwelder Street Culver City, CA 90232, 3105595720,


Interior designer:

Rodrigo Vargas Design



Structural: Nabih Youssef Structural Engineers

Mechanical/Electrical/Plumbing/Sustainability: Integral Group



Cost: Basis Consultants

Technology: Waveguide

Acoustical: Waveguide

AV: Waveguide


Lighting: Dark Horse Lighting


General contractor:

Tobo Construction



ohn Ellis



Structural System

Structural Steel: Access Steel Fabricating


Exterior Cladding

Thin Brick Veneer: Endicott



Sika Sarnafil G410

Spring Iso Curbs: ThyBar

OSA Flow Monitoring: Ebtron






PPG Solarban 70XL



Automatic Sliding Duraglide 2000 SS: Stanley

Hollow Metal Door: Door Components Inc

Hollow Metal Frame: Door Components Inc

Wood door: Haley

Custom Honeycomb Core Doors: Door Components Inc

Sliding Automatic Doors: Stanley

Sesame Access Door: Karp Associates

Insulated Exterior Access Door: Karp Associates

Combustible Ceiling Fire Rated Access Doors

Overhead Coiling Door: Cornell



Locks, latches, and keying: Schlage

Floor-Concealed Door Closer: Intertek

Door Closers: LCN

Overhead Closers (Double Acting): Rixon

Exit Devices: Von Duprin

Air Louvers: Vision Lite Frames and Door Louvers

Seals, door bottoms, and thresholds: NGP


Interior Finishes

Kitchen Zone square lay-in: Armstrong

Kitchen Zone beveled tegular: Armstrong

Armstrong Woodworks Concealed: Prime Acoustics

Branch ceiling: Tobo Construction Inc

Casework Handcrafted Bev Counter: Tobo Construction

DEW 341 Swiss Coffee Suprema Semi Gloss: Benjamin Moore Paints

DEW 341 Swiss Coffee Evershield Gloss: Benjamin Moore Paints

DEA 187 Black Suprema Flat: Benjamin Moore Paints

DEA 187 Black Suprema Semi Gloss: Benjamin Moore Paints

BM2065-40 Utah Sky Suprema Flat: Benjamin Moore Paints

BM2065-40 Utah Sky Suprema Semi Gloss: Benjamin Moore Paints DE 6315 Black Pool Suprema Semi Gloss, Suprema Flat: Benjamin Moore Paints DE 6364 Cavernous Suprema Semi Gloss, Suprema Flat: Benjamin Moore Paints

Branch Ceiling Rich Mahogany wood stain: Old Masters

Chalkboard paint: Benjamin Moore Paints

Custom Murals: Koroseal (design by Johnson Favaro)

Woodworks Ekos: Murano

Acoustical Wall Panels: Tech-Wall Inc

Acoustic Wood Veneer Panel: Murano:


Fluid Applied Chemical Resistant Flooring: Dur-a-flex

Floor and wall tile:

Custom Fireplace Floor Tile:  California Pottery and Tile Works (design by Johnson Favaro)

Custom Study Room Floor Tile:  Imagine Tile (design by Johnson Favaro)

Custom Study Den Floor Tile:  Imagine Tile (design by Johnson Favaro)

Reading Room Floor Tile: Iris Ceramica, Granitifiandre

Servery Tile: Daltile


Turkish Blend – Grey: Flor

Turkish Bloom – Grey: Flor

Turkish Smoke – Grey: Flor

First Absolute: Modulyss

Special interior finishes unique to this project:

Signage: Visual Graphics

Fireplace: Ortal heating Solutions

Wall & Corner guards: Gordon Incorporated



Fixed seating:

East Lounge Sectional Sofa: ZF Services

South Lounge Sofa: Steelcase

East Lounge Chair Leather Chairs: Tangram

Navy Counter Stool: Tangram

Lounge Chairs at Root Table: Tangram


North Lounge Café Chair: Tangram

East Chair Lounge Low Chair: Tangram

East Lounge Handle Aspen Chair: Bernhardt Furniture

East Lounge Carrel Armless Chair: ZF Services

Study Den Carrel Study Chair: Steelcase

Hi-Tech Study Room Chair: Steelcase

ADA Dining Chairs: Tangram

Reading Room Carrel Study Side Chair: ZF Services

Lounge Chairs at Root Table: Bernhardt Furniture


Community Dining Table: ZF Services (design by Rodrigo Vargas Design)

Coffee Table at Entrance: Steelcase

Sprout Café Table: Blu Dot Design

South and East Lounge Coffee Tables: ZF Services

East Lounge Table, 8 Seater: ZF Services

East Lounge Coffee Table: Steelcase

East Lounge Large Mimosa Table: Allermuir

High Tech Study Room Table 6 seater: Steelcase

High Tech Study Room Table 4 seater: Steelcase

East Lounge 12" Round Side Tables: Tangram Interiors

North Lounge Cafe Tables: West Coast Interiors

Study Tables and Carrels: Yamada


Oasis: Arc Com Fabrics, Inc.

Billiard Cloth: Designtex Fabrics

Trait: Maharam Fabric Corp



Interior ambient lighting:

Custom Chandelier: Spike Lighting

Pendants: Baselite Corporation

Optic Arts


Davidio Pendant: Western Energy Control Solutions

Recessed Indoor Source Lighting: Elliptipar

Bronx 1-Light Pendant: Eurofase Lighting

Brummel grande Pendant: Eurofase Lighting


Recessed Round Beveled Accent: LF Illumination

Trimmed Housings: LF Illumination

Simpleseal Csedo Series: Kenall

Beat Pendant Fat Black: Tom Dixon

Beat Pendant Wide Black: Tom Dixon

Beat Pendant Stout Black: Tom Dixon

Beat Pendant Tall Black: Tom Dixon

WingRail Ceiling Cable: Vode Lighting

Recessed LED 2x2: Lithonia

Recessed Lightplane: ALW

SNLED Lensed: Eaton

2” LED Recessed Downlight: Aculux


Hailey LED: Birchwood Lighting

Dimming system or other lighting controls:

Network Lighting Controls: nLight



Soil Pipe and Fittings:  Tyler/Husky

Copper Pipe and Fittings: Mueller Industries/Elkhart Products (Aalbert Industries)

Gas Pipe and Fittings: Wheatland/Anvil International/Brass Craft

Pipe Hanger and Supports: FNW

Valves: Nibco

Strainers: Wilkins

FD-1: Jay R. Smith

Clean outs: Jay R. Smith

Backflow Preventers: Watts

Water Hammer Arrestor: Jay R. Smith

Mixing valve: Watts

Outlet Boxes: Guy Gray



Energy management or building automation system:

Pollution Control Unit: Captive Aire

Upblast Centrifugal Exhaust Ventilator: Cook

Air Duct Damper Drive: Greenheck

Backdraft Damper: Ruskin

Rooftop Makeup Air Units: Aaon