Skanska says that its program management and consulting group, Skanska Integrated Solutions (SIS), has been selected as the construction management advisor for the Southeast Los Angeles (SELA) Cultural Center—a multi-arts facility in South Gate along the Los Angeles River.
SIS will oversee the management of planning, scheduling, preconstruction, coordination and procurement during the initial phases of the project. Gehry Partners is designing the structure. KCET reports that organizers will need to raise at least $150 million to reach a 2014 completion goal.
“The SELA Cultural Center will provide a unique opportunity to introduce Arts and Culture with the significance of landscapes, open space, rivers, and nature to a community that is wanting and needing more local activities and facilities that celebrate their cultural heritage, artistic expression and environment,” Mark Stanley, executive officer at River & Mountains Conservancy, said in a Jan. 18 statement. “Skanska, with their expertise in construction management, is helping to shepherd this project as we work through all its multiple facets for what will be the first of its kind along the Lower Los Angeles river.”
The center is the first project of the Los Angeles River Master Plan: a comprehensive program comprised of hundreds of projects that will transform the Los Angeles River.
“The new SELA Cultural Center will spur economic development, as well as community engagement through programming that is inclusive of underserved areas,” said SIS vice-presidentJohn Maloblocki. “Skanska looks forward to delivering a facility that will provide a permanent place for the community to gather.”
A unique aspect of this project is the level of community involvement throughout the conceptual planning process. Community input has been sought by the local city council and state representatives. To date, the citizens have weighed in on culinary programming, family-focused activities, music and art that will take place at the cultural center.
“Skanska takes great pride in this project, and we appreciate the opportunity to work for and with the surrounding neighborhoods,” says Mark Kindhouse, regional director of SIS and the executive overseeing the project. “The mission and purpose of SELA also aligns with our Skanska values of being better together and building for a better society.”