The 50-acre area adjacent to the Queen Mary in Long Beach is mostly used for parking on surface. It includes a dome designed by Buckminster Fuller, originally created to display Howard Hughes’ H-4 Hercules mammoth airplane known as the “Spruce Goose,“ and partially used as customs for cruise tourism.
We were first commissioned to design a temporary Shakespeare’s Globe Theater to last for five years. Following its design we dealt with several developers willing to invest in the area. To set a quantifiable direction, we created a Master Plan which included an international “bazaar,” a restaurants’ promenade, a floating lobby for the Queen Mary, parking structures and a “Westgate Tower,” to function as a West Coast “Statue of Liberty.”
We called it “Romeo and Julia Pregnant,” kissing. It was a project for a design competition in the heart of Hollywood. It included an 800-seat theater, a cineplex, an office building and a hotel. Most of the lower areas is accessible to pedestrians at street level. The two towers connected to each other at both the 10th floor and at the upper levels, which included restaurants and amenities. The curtain wall on both towers was conceived as a glass artwork.