2010 Idea Award Winner

Hydro-Urbanism: Re-thinking the LA River

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This project was completed as a final degree project for the B.Arch degree at USC, and was completed individually. The theme of the design studio focused on the neighborhoods surrounding the Los Angeles River in the section immediately east of Downtown. The area presents a wide range of difficulties and issues for the city of Los Angeles; from the aesthetic and ecological issues addressed in the River Masterplan, to the fate of the old Industrial buildings, the emerging Loft district, the existing film industry’s activity in the area, and the existing physical infrastructures of the city.

Zoltan Neville
818 618 1203

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May 30, 2013
  • Trans
Urban Recreation
Urban Influence
Transformed Urban Experience
New Ecological Cycle
Developed Local Design

The challenge for this particular project was to address the ecological problems of the Los Angeles River, especially in relation to the serious issues of drought and water conservation that the city is continually faced with, in a way which can improve the adjacent neighborhoods experientially while creating value.


The solution began with an idea to save LA River water that is flowing out to sea by storing the water in abandoned warehouse structures. A system was designed in which empty parking lots could be turned into natural filtration areas, in order to cleanse the water while also creating new public spaces for the neighborhood.

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