A New Perspective: Intern Site Visit to 1800 Vine


My fellow summer interns and I recently had the opportunity to join a site visit of 1800 Vine St., an architecture and landscape project that Rios Clementi Hale Studios is completing in Hollywood. When we arrived at the site, I overheard my colleagues talking about the challenge of working with an octagonal building. I noticed that the design accented the building’s unique shape without obscuring it or overemphasizing it.

Nowhere is that more evident than on the new rooftop deck, where areas for sitting and relaxing complement triangular sections of green roof. Code requires that the flora be placed in raised planter beds, thus limiting the number of people that can be on the roof at one time. And our client asked that all the plants keep a low profile, preventing them from blocking the 360-degree views of the iconic Capitol Records building and other landmarks of the Hollywood skyline.  A tree aloe (aloe barberae) is the only species that ascends more than three feet high.

Our partners at Live Roof did an amazing job pre-growing a variety of species so they were in perfect health when they arrived on site. They were a trusted consulting partner throughout the entire process. And they even hand-watered the purple aeonium, cistanthe grandiflora, and sedum Angelina (among other succulents and grasses) until they fully established themselves.

The roof was still a work in progress when we visited, so we were able to witness several stages of construction. In some areas, the finished decking boards were already in place, but in others, we hopped from one open rafter to another. That allowed us to see the structural system the team put in place to support the new roof deck.

The caps for the bench seating had yet to be installed, but we could already see how the four quadrants of the roof deck were coming together. And we got a chance to glimpse the steel trellis, with its slats pitched at just the right angle to provide sun for plants and shade for people.

In all, the site visit was a real eye-opener for me. As a student, I don’t often get to see the interior structural design of a building, much less walk atop the posts and beams of a green roof. It’s something you just can’t replicate in a construction document.