Herald Examiner Building

Location

Downtown Los Angeles

Owner

The Georgetown Company

Architect

Gensler

Project Size

135,950 sf

Originally designed by Julia Morgan, architect to William Randolph Hearst, this historic building has stood in downtown Los Angeles since 1914 and became an official cultural monument in 1977. MATT’s team is undertaking extensive core and shell construction and seismic retrofitting to adapt and update the structure.

The repurposed space will hold mixed-use offices and restaurant retail. Construction will entail an exterior restoration, the addition of an elevator and restroom facilities, the leveling out of uneven spaces, upgrading fire/life safety features and adding new entrances, new shear walls and a new LADWP yard.

Historic preservation is a high priority. The lobby’s original hand-painted floor tiles, large windows, railings, columns and pilasters add the grandeur of a cathedral to the space. Elaborate woodwork, molding and details on the roof provide additional opportunity to maintain the character of the original building. The team will seamlessly replicate whatever they cannot salvage.

Both the design of the existing building and its tight urban location make it challenging to get materials in and out. The team will use the grand arched storefront windows, which were boarded up many years ago, to create easier access for material traffic without damaging the integrity of the building. Breaking equipment into smaller pieces and assembling it inside the structure will help to mitigate limited laydown and storage area.