Santa Monica Civic Center Parking Structure

Santa Monica Civic Center Parking Structure

1855 Main St., Santa Monica, CA 90401

Isn’t the very idea—a LEED_certified parking garage—oxymoronic and perverse?Architect James Mary O'Connor's firm, Moore Ruble Yudell, talked the Santa Monica City Council into incorporating a bit of virtue into the 900-car building. Indeed, cars are still very much with us, taking up space and inflating our carbon footprints, so they might as well park in a garage that derives at least part of its wattage from solar panels on the rooftop shade structure, filters oil and other automobile effluvia out of storm-water runoff, has recycled fly ash in the concrete, and provides free bike-storage lockers and outlets for electric cars. But, all that aside, the multicolored glass-and-neon garage is unusually pretty. And maybe that’s the point.

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