As we know, the politics of architecture can get a little out-of-hand — especially when it comes from tax payers dollars. The focus of the Robert F. Kennedy Community Schools, launching in LA next month, has been on the controversial, with many reporting that the educational institution is superfluous given the current economy and the suffering school district’s heavy budget-cutting as it laid off over 3,000 teachers recently.

Politics aside, no one can argue that it isn’t good for the kids who will attend classes there. Having said that, what let’s get to the design of the school and what makes this one of the “Best of design”. It is, by far, one of the absolute best preservation builds in the history of the United States.

The Spanish Mediterranean-style Ambassador Hotel was designed in 1921 by Myron Hunt, and has hosted  The Oscars several times, and Robert F. Kennedy was assassinated there in 1968.

The Week fills us in on exactly what $578 million will buy these kids:

What does $578 million buy you?
The 24-acre RFK campus will include seven different schools that will serve 4,260 K-12 students. It also features a sizable park, a state-of-the-art swimming pool, underground parking, “talking” benches that recall the site’s historical significance, and a marble memorial to Kennedy. The buildings will include restored or recreated sections of the 1921 hotel and the Cocoanut Grove nightclub, where artists like Frank Sinatra sang for Hollywood royalty.

What was preserved?
A wall of the Cocoanut Grove, and the coffee shop, originally designed by noted architect Paul Williams and now used as a teachers’ lounge. The auditorium is a recreation of the Cocoanut Grove nightclub, and the library is a modified replica of the Ambassador’s ballroom.

Read the full article, America’s most expensive public school: What $578 million buys.

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America’s most expensive public school: What $578 million buys

L.A.’s historic Ambassador Hotel — site of Robert F. Kennedy’s 1968 assassination — has been replaced with the country costliest public school campus

The RFK school will cost $578 million, more than double the price of LA's newly built $232 million Visual and Performing Arts High School (shown above).

The RFK school will cost $578 million, more than double the price of LA’s newly built $232 million Visual and Performing Arts High School (shown above). Photo: CC BY: Justefrain

The Los Angeles Unified School District is nearing completion of a new $578 million public school campus on the site it cleared by razing the storied Ambassador Hotel, where Robert Kennedy was assassinated in 1968. When it opens, the Robert F. Kennedy Community Schools will be the most expensive public school in the U.S. — and one of the most controversial of the nation’s so-called “Taj Mahal” schools, given that the struggling school district has been forced to lay off nearly 3,000 teachers and slash programs in recent years. (Watch a local report about the school.) Here, a quick guide:

What does $578 million buy you?
The 24-acre RFK campus will include seven different schools that will serve 4,260 K-12 students. It also features a sizable park, a state-of-the-art swimming pool, underground parking, “talking” benches that recall the site’s historical significance, and a marble memorial to Kennedy. The buildings will include restored or recreated sections of the 1921 hotel and the Cocoanut Grove nightclub, where artists like Frank Sinatra sang for Hollywood royalty.

What was preserved?
A wall of the Cocoanut Grove, and the coffee shop, originally designed by noted architect Paul Williams and now used as a teachers’ lounge. The auditorium is a recreation of the Cocoanut Grove nightclub, and the library is a modified replica of the Ambassador’s ballroom.

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