Ideas That Matter

An Open Space Sequence in Los Angeles?

Lisa Gimmy



Published by Lisa Gimmy, ASLA, LEED AP


The pioneering work of landscape architect Lawrence Halprin will be explored at “Landscape as Catalyst,” an upcoming seminar at the A + D Museum to be held on November 4, 2017.

During his fifty-year career Halprin designed many well-loved places. He is perhaps best known for the Franklin Delano Roosevelt Memorial in Washington, DC, and for the amazing participatory fountains he designed for Portland, Oregon. Pictured above is the Ira Keller Fountain, photographed by Jeremy Bittermann.
The fountains in Portland were commissioned by the city’s redevelopment agency with the goal of revitalizing downtown Portland, and were constructed between 1966 and 1970. Today, these landscapes are under the stewardship of the Halprin Foundation.

Halprin built on the idea of a landscape sequence in the work he did in Los Angeles, for the Community Redevelopment Agency and then for developer Robert Maguire. This sketch below shows the idea of two of the public spaces, the garden at the Central Library and the Bunker Hill Steps, connected by a richly landscaped Grand Avenue.

“The Los Angeles Open Space Network” drawing by Lawrence Halprin. Courtesy Lawrence Halprin Collection, The University of Pennsylvania.


While the plan for Grand Avenue wasn’t realized, Halprin did build four landscapes in downtown Los Angeles. In our next blogs, we’ll feature these places: Grand Hope Park, Wells Fargo Plaza, Maguire Gardens and the Bunker Hill Steps.

To learn more about the Halprin exhibit The Landscape Architecture of Lawrence Halprin, click here. For more information about the seminar “Landscape as Catalyst: Lawrence Halprin’s Legacy and Los Angeles,” and to register, click here.

Writer and Media Management Consultant Taylor Van Arsdale provided research and contributed to this article.

Lisa Gimmy Landscape Architecture

Helms Bakery Building
8800 Venice Blvd., Suite 216
Los Angeles, CA 90034

Phone: (310) 202-8320
Fax: (310) 202-8350

Creating landscapes for California living



Lisa Gimmy Landscape Architecture is a professional consulting firm offering master planning, site planning, and landscape design. Since its founding in 1992, LGLA has designed landscapes for schools, campuses, boutique hotels, buildings, public parks, estates, and private residences. At LGLA each project is viewed as an opportunity to explore a series of relationships: between the site and the region, architecture and landscape, and most importantly, between the landscape and the people who will use and enjoy it.

Recent Posts




    Marin Landscaping Annie Chu Landscape Sequence garden restoration Virginia Robinson Architect's Garden Garden Dialogues Lovelace Pool Kaufman House tropical planting Landscape as Catalyst Transforming Small Spaces, Intimate Courtyards, Custom Steel Gates, Velvet Elephant Ear, Kalanchoe Beharensis, Bluestone Pavers, Bourget Brothers, Moroccan Motif Desert Courtyard House Jeffrey Dahl, John Wooden, Dustin Dorr, Rosemarie Allaire, Yoshikawa Adolf Loos Howard Rosen Denise Scott Brown California Preservation Foundation Wells Fargo Plaza toys Julius Shulman exhibition design granite First Point Construction Frank Gehry Jack Coyier Kelly Sutherlin McLeod Architecture Japanese gardens George Hargreaves Richard Neutra Rose N' Palm Herzog and de Meuron TheBlack Desert House Villa Pisani Italy Palm Springs Modernism John Lautner Ray Eames King Palm forest Stinson Beach Heidi Duckler Dance Theatre Opera on the Great Lawn garden design furniture Grace Miller House Delta Bluegrass Pasadena Craftsman poppies Lina Loos Barbara Lamprecht Flowermaid Garden Conservancy Open Days Lawrence Halprin Heineman and Heineman David Collins Grand Eclair Nord Eriksson Dominus Winery Los Angeles Central Library FIDM Elrod House Oller & Pejic Lisa Gimmy Kun II fabrics Edris House Nasher Sculpture Garden interiors LIght/Breeze House Los Angeles Community Redevelopment Agency Cleo Baldon Thomas D. Church Ralph Bacerra Don Chadwick Lisa Boone Artecho Vaux le Vicomte Paulette Singley Los Angeles Conservancy Koffka/Phakos Design grasses Floating Teehouse Maguire Gardens Ralph Cornell, Malcolm Leland, Howard Troller, UCLA, Franklin D. Murphy Sculpture Garden mid century architecture 9-11 Memorial garden color Martin Garden Kitchen for Exploring Foods Native Bentgrass, Hafley House, Hindry House, Artificial Turf landscape architecture in los angeles Cranbrook Academy of Art New York landscape architecture multidisciplinary designer Native Mow Free Hafley House Frank Lloyd Wright Peter Walker graphic design tablescape Bunker Hill Steps Garden of Sculpture E. Stewart Williams Hindry House Craig Elwood Leslie Cozzi Bolinas Landscape Architecture Courtney Coffman Friends of Robinson Gardens Deborah Sussman Photography by Marion Brenner Darin Marten Heather Scott Peterson Mission Revival Virginia Robinson Gardens Charles Waldheim Loewy House Jon and Liliane Lovelace Soils Solutions Florence Knoll Isabelle Green, FASLA rock Max Palevsky House California natives mid century landscapes Grand Hope Park Los Angeles Times pool landscaping downtown Los Angeles Carl Andre TCLF Gere Kavanaugh Docomomo Award Eugene Kinn Choy, Garden Dialogues, The Cultural Landscape Foundation Ruth Adler Schnee Queer Eye for the Straight Guy Andre Le Notre MoMA, Museum of Modern Art Allegra Fuller Snyder Wendell Burnette EPT Design Ira Keller Fountain Craftsman Albert Frey Kengo Kuma Pamela Palmer