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City Embraces Creative Proposal for Sunset Strip Pilot Digital Billboard Project

Post Date:October 19, 2016 8:30 AM

SunsetBelltowerConceptRenderingThe City Council of the City of West Hollywood has selected a creative team for its Sunset Strip Pilot Creative Off-Site Advertising Sign project. The decision was made at the regular meeting of the City Council on Monday, October 17, 2016. The winning proposal is for a vertically oriented, three-dimensional “West Hollywood Belltower” designed by the Orange Barrel Media/Tom Wiscombe Architecture/MOCA/Walter P. Moore team.

This one-of-a-kind, creative billboard structure will be installed at the City-owned site at 8775 Sunset Boulevard as a limited-term pilot project. Known worldwide as the Sunset Strip, the section of Sunset Boulevard in West Hollywood is famous not only for its history as an entertainment and nightlife destination, but also for its vibrant and unusual outdoor advertising. This pilot project will provide the City and the community with the opportunity to lead the way for creative applications of state-of-the-art advertising along the Sunset Strip.

The selected creative team has envisioned an open-air “Belltower” concept with a three-sided surface featuring high-resolution LED video projections, static screens, and theatrical lighting. The proposed structure features a unique layering of technology, custom advertising content, and art curated by the Museum of Contemporary Art (MOCA). This will allow members of the public to have a unique experience that integrates the community plaza with ongoing digital art displays on the open-air interior of the structure. There will also be interactive features accessible to observers with handheld devices.

The Orange Barrel Media/Tom Wiscombe Architecture/MOCA/Walter P. Moore team was selected following a competitive submissions process, which included identifying a vision for a pilot project, developing review criteria, eliciting proposals, and conducting a careful and informed review. Nine teams submitted proposals and four exceptional finalists were selected by the review panel. The finalists’ proposals were chosen based on the inclusion of thought-provoking ideas that embrace the unique urban space of the Sunset Strip. In addition, submissions had to demonstrate a thorough understanding of the scope of the work, creativity and innovation, professional skills and credentials, and an economic value to the City. All finalist teams were composed of partners representing a wide range of disciplines. A City panel was tasked with recommending finalist teams based on a Request for Proposals (RFP) scoring system.

The winning team combines uniquely qualified talents to respond to the City’s vision. Orange Barrel Media specializes in one-of-a-kind outdoor advertising projects that engage the viewer in surprising ways, focusing exclusively on urban large-format projects. Tom Wiscombe Architecture provides a design that is rooted in the history, aesthetics, and forward-thinking nature of the Los Angeles region. Wiscombe’s concept creates a unique site that catalyzes an innovative future for the Sunset Strip to be a visual destination that honors the creative media of both the moment and the future. MOCA, with its deep background in identifying and presenting significant art, will actively support the curation of public art experiences. Walter P. Moore provides significant experience in innovative structural engineering that supports creative visioning.

The other three outstanding finalist teams were:

  • JCDecaux/Zaha Hadid Project Management Ltd./Buro Happold Engineering/Levin-Morris Architects/Mia Lehrer + Associates;
  • Outfront Media/ Gensler/MAK Center for Art and Architecture; and
  • TAIT Towers Inc.

Outdoor advertising on West Hollywood’s stretch of Sunset Boulevard characterizes the uniqueness of the Sunset Strip’s unparalleled historical connection to music, entertainment, architecture, fashion, and culture-making. The billboards designed during the creative pinnacle of Sunset Boulevard’s outdoor advertising were commissioned by high-profile advertising agencies and were often hand-painted and crafted as exclusive campaign installations. In the rock-and-roll era, custom designed billboards legendarily promoted the musicians and bands that brought fans from all over the world to the Sunset Strip’s clubs and venues. The Sunset Strip Pilot Digital Billboard  project continues this tradition of invention — and also embraces new thinking about how advances in digital technology can re-energize the Sunset Strip’s distinctive sense of place  with an approach that combines advertising, art, and public space.

Additional information about the City of West Hollywood’s Sunset Strip Pilot Digital Billboard project is available by visiting www.weho.org/sunsetsigns.

For more information, please contact Bianca Siegl, the City of West Hollywood’s Long Range & Mobility Planning Manager, at (323) 848-6853 or at bsiegl@weho.org. For people who are deaf or hearing impaired, please call TTY (323) 848-6496.

Image — “West Hollywood Belltower” concept rendering: Orange Barrel Media/Tom Wiscombe Architecture/MOCA/Walter P. Moore team | Courtesy of the City of West Hollywood, Tom Wiscombe Architecture, and Kilograph.