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Bank of America Plaza in the SkyscraperPage Database

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Old Posted Nov 17, 2009, 8:52 PM
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Thumbs up LOS ANGELES | Bank of America Plaza | 735 FT / 224 M | 55 FLOORS | 1974

Sitting unapologetically atop a 9 level parking garage podium to bring it level with adjacent Bunker Hill and Hope Street, the 55 story Bank of America Plaza sits as a monument to all that went wrong with the planning of downtown Los Angeles. The podium (which has lovely gardens on top), absolutely destroyed the streetscape on the Flower Street, 3rd Street and 4th Street sides of the tower, creating the need for oddly sloped pedestrian bridges to adjacent (and yet raised) buildings. The result is a pleasant, but extremely isolated space, hugely disconnected from the rest of downtown. This is not unlike several other buildings on Bunker Hill, this one just happened to be the first office tower and one of the largest overall.

The tower is unique only in that it sits at a 45 degree angle to the street grid, with chamfered corners and a granite clad cap. 70's modernism at its finest! The complex was designed by AC Martin & Partners and is arguably their least appealing project in downtown LA. Originally the headquarters for Security Pacific Bancorp, the tower has had a number of logos on its crown since SPB was acquired by BofA in 1991: Arco, BP and lastly Bank of America (who moved their main LA offices from the BofA/Arco Plaza on Flower Street in the early 00's).

When completed in 1974, this was the 2nd tallest building in the city. It's still 5th.

(sporting the original Security Pacific logo - from my postcard collection):






















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Old Posted Dec 8, 2009, 9:00 PM
Buckeye Native 001 Buckeye Native 001 is offline
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Okay for a big box, but the plaza and surrounding streetscape is ridiculously sterile.
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Old Posted Dec 8, 2009, 9:29 PM
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Yes, the area is definitely sterile, Buckeye. Unfortunately, much of Downtown L.A.'s business district, such as California Plaza and Bunker Hill, is pretty sterile, and buildings with huge ugly podiums like the Westin Bonaventure didn't help, either. Of course, the hilliness of the area (Bunker Hill really IS a hill! ), makes it kind of hard not to have buildings raised up, requiring skywalks and the like...

Either way, I don't find the building that ugly at all. Not everything can be as beautiful as the Library Tower (err, whatever it's called now...)!

Aaron (Glowrock)
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