Thursday, March 23, 2006
L.A.rchitecture - Beverly Hills
Union 76 Station (1965), Pereira and Luckman, architect firm –
(427 North Crescent Dr., Beverly Hills, CA 90210)
Part of the architectural team that designed LAX’s Theme Building (the one straight out of the Jetsons--and not surprisingly in a number of James Bond films), Pereira and Luckman further display their predilection for jet-set space age architecture with this Beverly Hills Union 76 gas station. It’s main awning sweeps upward like the fin of a manta ray, both protecting customers from the sun and rain as well as waving to the speeding traffic, beckoning them to refuel.
The station’s placement on the corner of Crescent Drive and Little Santa Monica Blvd. makes the beckoning more like the doomful luring of the Greek mythological Sirens. Beverly Hills’ strict commercial zoning has made gas stations a rarity in town and so the station always has the highest gas prices around. It preys upon both the city’s wealthy citizens as well as its near exclusive gas selling status (you might as well be driving through the desert).