Gateway to Nature Center
Gateway to Nature Center
Gateway to Nature Center
Gateway to Nature Center
Museums

The Gateway to Nature Center

  • Client: Western National Parks Association
  • 1,700 Square Feet

Located in the historic Hellman/Quon building at El Pueblo de Los Ángeles Historical Monument, the Gateway to Nature Center is designed to engage all audiences, with specific focus toward youth and school groups. Aiming to inspire curiosity, adventure, and a sense of advocacy for parks, the center highlights the unique ways in which Los Angeles allows citizens to engage with their local parks, forests, and public lands.

Cinnabar designed and built this unique retail environment, which is interspersed with interpretive text and imagery as well as engaging interactives. Cinnabar worked with the client to develop text that teaches adults and children alike about the numerous parks in the Los Angeles area by sharing historical information, showcasing the stories of people who have made important contributions and providing memorable fun facts about nature in Los Angeles. At the same time, the playful and flexible table and shelving design provides ample room for the park and nature-themed merchandise, proceeds from which support our parks and public lands.

The space features a 16-foot map wall that highlights parks throughout the greater Los Angeles area and beyond. Graphic features let visitor identify which parks are in walking distance, biking distance and driving distance so that they can plan their visits. A viewfinder interactive lets visitors know where to find hidden local surprises such as rock art, tide pool ecosystems, and old zoo ruins. Live plants populate the light-filled space including the several shelves of an air plant donor wall.

Photos courtesy of Elon Schoenholz