Roosevelt High School

Los Angeles, California

Roosevelt High School opened in 1923 in the heart of Boyle Heights, a multicultural Los Angeles neighborhood referred to as “the Ellis Island of the West Coast.” Playing an important role in the community’s social and physical fabric, the school’s well-used facilities needed renovation or replacement. The result of an extensive design-build process, the Swinerton/LPA-designed buildings will link the school’s past, present and future, paying homage to their predecessors while providing a vision of future possibilities.

Moments of vibrant color and student- and community-authored murals bookend each public campus edge, highlight student activity and connect the school to its cultural roots. A glass-wrapped bridge and outdoor amphitheater take advantage of a 12.5-foot grade differential found across the site and give students opportunity to transition between spectator and performer as they navigate their school day. Programmed exterior spaces are linked by a promenade, offering students a variety of formal and informal gathering spaces, a diversity of scales to encourage independent or group study, both active work and performance areas and passive respites to allow students opportunity for quiet reflection.

Contractor: Swinerton

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