The Future of Office Work: How We Got Here, 2013. (cityLAB-UCLA and Gensler publication)

The Future of Work: How We Got Here evokes a new conversation about the history and future of office work, office buildings, and their impacts on downtown Los Angeles (DTLA). This investigation takes place during an era of urban resurgence in the city and increased mobility in contemporary life. Office work in Los Angeles has been sheltered by multiple versions of the mono-functional office building, both high and low-rise, situated within many different settings; from the office parks and low-rise industrial buildings of the San Fernando and San Gabriel Valleys, to the landscape of logistics that is the Port of Los Angles, to the autotopia of Century City, to the creative offices spaces of the Westside, and to work-live spaces in a re-imagined downtown. The variety of Los Angeles’s office landscape is the result of decades of architectural experimentation, and, according to some boosters, has contributed to its resilience to broad economic change. 

This study reviews the planning history of downtown Los Angeles and the political and economic regimes attached to various Los Angeles downtown planning ideals and evolutions of work in downtown Los Angeles at the scale of the city, the building, and the desk. 

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Future of Work