Vote for your favorite among some very colorful and whimsical options

As Grand Park continues to grow into its role as an important public space, park officials are turning to the public to weigh in on a fancy new shade structure to be located between the Arthur J. Will Memorial Fountain and the nearby performance space. After receiving submissions from more than 50 local artists, a committee has narrowed down the list to three possible designs for the structure. Now those designs have been released to the public for a vote.

Of course, different people might have very different opinions on what constitutes a good shade structure, and the criteria described on the ballot is pretty vague. All that park officials offer is that “the theme of the design should reflect the park and its role in civic life in Los Angeles County.” Well, let’s keep that in mind and take a good look at the candidates:

Undercover Picnic

Undercover picnic shade design
Undercover picnic shade design

Grand Park

Undercover picnic shade structure
Undercover picnic shade structure

Grand Park

This neat design offers bright and friendly colors, and seems to come with a matching taco truck. That’s a definite plus. The intersecting strands overhead perhaps reflect the way the city is woven together from the fabric of a diverse array of cultures. Unfortunately, this shade structure seems a little short on actual shade. Nobody wants to be stuck in one of those squares of sunlight when they’re waiting in line for hot sauce.

Paper Airplane

Paper Airplane shade structure
Paper Airplane shade structure

Grand Park

Paper Airplane shade structure
Paper Airplane shade structure

Grand Park

It’s hard to tell what this structure would look like when you’re standing under it, but from the vantage points in the renderings, it’s pretty impressive. The way the paper airplanes jut upwards, as if taking off, is a nice touch. It’s hard to tell, though, how this reflects the park and its role in LA’s civic life. Is it a symbol of Downtown’s unprecedented growth? An ode to Southern California’s aerospace industry? Or maybe it’s a political commentary on the way elected officials spend their time at nearby City Hall.

Sonar

Sonar shade structure
Sonar shade structure

Grand Park

Sonar shade structure
Sonar shade structure

Grand Park

At first glance, this design looks a bit like a T-Mobile ad, but the way its many strands wind through the park creates a neat effect. The name of the sculpture, “Sonar,” gives a clue to how it might reflect the park’s role in civic life—offering a visual representation of the sounds of the city traveling through the park and bouncing off nearby buildings. Again, though, it’s hard to tell how functional this design would be. The ample amount of shade depicted in the renderings seems generous.

Think over all three choices and make sure to submit your vote by the March 25 deadline.

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