Century Plaza Towers

Century Plaza Towers
  1. About the Century Plaza Towers in Los Angeles
  2. Architect and team
  3. Architectureal style
  4. Spaces and uses
  5. Structure and materials

The Century Plaza Towers is an International Style skyscraper designed by Minoru Yamasaki & Associates and built between 1969 and 1975 in Los Angeles, CA.

Its precise street address is 2029 and 2049 Century Park East, Los Angeles, CA. You can also find it on the map here.

These twin tower are minimalist in materials and decoration, reaffirming Yamasaki's concept that buildings, for their greater stability, function, and aesthetic appeal, should use the least possible amount of materials.

The two towers have a triangular floorplan, facing each other through one of their apexes. This shape also extends into the landscaping around the buildings.

The building underwent a major restoration in 2008. The architect commissioned to undertake this restoration was Keating Khang Architects.

Building's timeline

Construction begins
Construction completed
years ago
  1. 2008 - The lobbies of both towers were renovated. The architect in charge was Keating Khang Architects.

Architect and team

Minoru Yamasaki & Associates was the architecture firm in charge of the architectural design.

Minoru Yamasaki & Associates was in charge of the architectural design, however, architecture is a complex discipline, which usually involves many professionals from different fields, without whom this building would have not been possible. We will surely be leaving out a lot of names here, but at the very least we know that there was one other part involved, that was Trammell Crow Company as the Main Developer.

Architectural Style

The Century Plaza Towers can be categorized as an International Style building.

The international style originated in Europe in the early 20th century, and made its way to the US a couple of decades later when the rise of the Nazi regime forced figures such as Walter Gropius, Marcel Breuer, or Mies van der Rohe to flee Europe.

The International Style emerged as a response to the prevailing historicism and ornate architecture styles of the late 19th century, which according to a younger generation of architects didn't represent the new materials and construction techniques that were on the rise at the time.

Architecture in the early 20th century US was marked by the adoption of steel structures, modern construction techniques, and the rise of the skyscraper. As it turns out, this combination of circumstances created the perfect ecosystem for the International Style to flourish, becoming the to-go style for skyscraper designs during the mid-20th century, when American cities were growing fast.

The International Style’s legacy can not only be found in numerous iconic buildings across all major American cities, but also incorporated in contemporary architecture, which still puts a big emphasis on functionality and minimalism.

Spaces & Uses

The Century Plaza Towers reaches an architectural height of 571ft (174m). It has a total of 50 floors, 44 above ground and 6 basements, served by 52 elevators, which combined offer a total of 2,260,419 sqf (210,000m2) of usable space.

In regards to parking space, the building has a total of 5000 spots available, which roughly equals 114 spots per floor (above ground), or one parking spot per every 452 sqf (42m2) of usable space.

Ever since opening its doors to the public in 1975, the Century Plaza Towers has mainly been used as Commercial space.

571ft (174m)
6 basements

Materials & Structure

The Century Plaza Towers uses a frame structure made of columns and beams.

A frame structure uses a combination of beams and columns to sustain the building's weight. The walls in this case are non-load bearing, which allows for more flexibility when distributing the interior spaces.

The facade is non-load bearing either, as it is common in frame structure type buildings.

From an aesthetic point of view, the facade features a dark glass curtain wall, gray spandrels and vertical aluminum elements that accentuate their height. A plaza between the buildings, known as Century Park, adds a green touch to the stone ground, as it is largely landscaped with grass and trees.