The Land: The Man with The Plan

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Luckman bought Pereira out for a reported half million dollars, and Pereira set up shop on his own. He did not lack new clients. The split with Luckman was hardly completed when the Lockheed Aircraft Corp. asked Pereira to master-plan a $50 million research center, and from then on he had all the jobs he could handle.

The Red Barn. Some were for large land projects such as the design of 5,000 acres of residential and commercial development at California's Bishop Ranch; others involved simply the architectural design for individual buildings. (One of his best is the new headquarters of the Hunt Foods Co. at nearby Fullerton.) Currently under construction on Wilshire Boulevard is the Pereira-designed Los Angeles County Art Museum, biggest to be built in the U.S. since Washington's National Gallery in 1941. This $8,000,000 structure, financed through the efforts of Department Store Magnate Edward W. Carter, will feature three soaring pavilions arranged on a central pool of water. Pereira's new museum for cinema and TV is going up not far away. Both are part of Los Angeles' current cultural expansion, of which the biggest monument is the $24 million music center being built, half by municipal funds, half by private contributions collected —in one of the great virtuoso performances of U.S. fund raising—by Dorothy Buffum Chandler, wife of Newspaper Publisher Norman Chandler (the Times-Mirror Co.).

When the regents for the University of California asked him to find a 1,000-acre site for a new branch of the university, Pereira and his staff spent four months researching the nature of the university throughout history. Eventually he took the regents on a tour of 23 sites, ending with the one he liked best: Irvine Ranch. Both the regents and the Irvine Co. agreed. And Irvine, impressed by Pereira's design ideas decided to let him try his hand at a master plan for the entire ranch.

Staff headquarters for the Irvine project is Urbanus Square—a remodeled red barn in the midst of the ranch's rolling greenery. Inside, the white plaster walls are covered with brightly colored plans, maps and projections, and the huge floor is crowded with big tables holding clay models of structures, topographical miniatures, sketches of things to come. At one side is a conference and dining area, dominated by an ever-burning fireplace and well stocked with books, records and liquor. Pereira wheels out a couple of times a week to visit his planners in the red barn, calling them together for "crits"—a term (from critiques) that carries over from his years of teaching. There may be a dozen or more crits a day on various aspects of the project.

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