Los Angeles–based practice Gehry Partners is expanding into larger headquarters at a time when most companies are scaling back. The 160-person firm, which declined to comment on rumored layoffs, is vacating its five-year-old, 44,000-square-foot home at 12541 Beatrice Street for new digs in El Segundo. Gehry has signed a 10-year lease to occupy an existing 70,000-square-foot industrial complex between Utah and Alaska avenues, near Aviation Boulevard.
The 3.53-acre campus consists of two 1950s warehouse buildings, which are being upgraded and expanded. A 50,000-square-foot main building will house Gehry offices and design studios, with Gehry Technologies and archives located within the 19,500-square-foot building next door. A trellis structure of large timber planks arranged in an offset X-shaped pattern links the two buildings, and it will be drawn into both interiors to help define the 24-foot-tall spaces.
Renovations include larger entryways, new windows, and raised skylights to enhance internal daylighting, while a metal wall is being added along Alaska Avenue to enclose a garden area and create a new building facade. Construction of a new 5,000-square-foot multipurpose structure is expected in the future.
The project’s developer, Beverly Hills–based NSB Associates, has collaborated with Gehry Partners twice before. Although costs for the new campus are undisclosed, NSB chairman Lawrence Field says most of the improvement expenses are being built into the rent. The project will open in phases from mid-2009 into early 2010.