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Johnson Fain Founders Win Gold Medal For Shiny Downtown Tower, Other Projects

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Scott Johnson FAIA and William H. Fain, the founders of architecture firm Johnson Fain, won a Gold Medal from the American Institute of Architects Los Angeles, "the highest honor presented to individuals for their design contributions to the profession of architecture." Included in the accompanying press packet was this rendering for 426 South Spring Street, a condo/hotel project for the historic core that got a lot of buzz when it was presented to downtowners earlier this year. Status, please? "It's in design," a representative for Johnson Fain tells us. While "definitely going forward," the project will see many more months of design work, we're told. The firm is also behind the forthcoming additions at Dodgers Stadium, Met Lofts, and more.

OS ANGELES--(BUSINESS WIRE)--Architects Scott Johnson FAIA and William H. Fain, Jr. FAIA will receive the Gold Medal -- the highest honor presented to individuals and given by the American Institute of Architects Los Angeles (AIA/LA) for their design contributions to the profession of architecture. Johnson and Fain are partners of Johnson Fain, the Los Angeles-based architecture, urban design + planning and interiors firm that they co-founded in 1989. The Gold Medal will be presented at the 2008 AIA/LA Design Awards event on June 4, 2008, at the Los Angeles County Museum of Art.

“Scott and I are very grateful for the wonderful recognition. We would like to also acknowledge the many dedicated and gifted architects in our organization who have supported our efforts over the past two decades. Scott and I share a passion for Los Angeles and are committed to enhancing the vibrancy and civic life of our city through our professional work,” says Fain, partner and director of urban design + planning for Johnson Fain.

Johnson stated, “This is a great honor, particularly satisfying since it is bestowed by our colleagues. Bill and I are both native Californians who migrated to the East Coast but were drawn back by the lure and complexity of Los Angeles and the opportunity for creative work in the diverse mega-city L.A. has become.”

Johnson Fain is one of the rare firms that is well established as a leader in architecture, urban design and interior design. Both Johnson and Fain are active civic leaders who devote significant time and resources to cultural, charitable and academic endeavors.

Johnson, design partner, directs the firm’s architecture and interior design, and is widely regarded as one of the nation’s leading architects of high-profile towers including five California landmarks – Fox Plaza, SunAmerica Center and MGM Tower in Century City, Rincon Center in San Francisco and Nestlé USA Headquarters in Glendale. His latest, Museum Tower in Dallas’ Arts District, is receiving widespread acclaim for its translucent oval façade and unique design presence that will transform the skyline of downtown Dallas. Among Johnson’s notable projects, the Opus One and Byron wineries have drawn critical praise. He has also designed multiple projects for biotech giants, Amgen and Genentech. Johnson is a professor at the University of Southern California School of Architecture and the author of the recent book, The Big Idea, Criticality and Practice in Contemporary Architecture.

Through large scale urban design, community planning, and downtown redevelopment projects, Fain has focused on advancing the practice of urban design as a bridge between the public and private sectors. Among his award-winning planning and urban design projects are the 300-acre Mission Bay master plan in San Francisco which received a national AIA award, Beijing’s new Central Business District, the Greenways Plan for Los Angeles and the American Indian Cultural Center and Museum in Oklahoma City. In 2002, Fain won the Rome Prize Fellowship, the prestigious annual award of the American Academy in Rome. During his tenure as a Rome Fellow, he proposed to transform the Tiber River into a dynamic urban zone and gathering place.

Johnson and Fain frequently collaborate, most recently on the design of the $500 million renovation of Dodger Stadium unveiled last month. They also collaborated on the design of a three-block mixed-use entertainment, residential and civic district adjacent to San Diego’s PETCO Park where two, 40-story Marriott hotel towers designed by Johnson are currently underway. Civic work includes the multi-block Capitol Area East End Complex in Sacramento whose Department of Education facilities recently received a platinum LEED rating, the highest available. Johnson Fain is also currently active on a number of projects in cities of the Far East.

AIA/LA is a chapter of the American Institute of Architects, the voice of the architecture profession. With 2,300 members, AIA/LA is one of the largest and most prominent chapters in the country.

· Scott Johnson FAIA and William H. Fain, Jr. FAIA Receive Gold Medal [BusinessWire]