Caltrans District 7 Headquarters – Post #8

The Caltrans District 7 Headquarters building at 100 South Main Street in Downtown Los Angeles, California serves the California Department of Transportation (Caltrans) and the Los Angeles Department of Transportation.

Caltrans 71_Carousel

The building has a futuristic and environmentally friendly design, which actually won Thomas Mayne the 2005 Pritzker prize. There are 13 stories and 716,200 gross square feet for office spaces as well as an underground parking garage.

An interesting architectural design is the large “100” which is four stories high, on the side of the building. This is to represent which street they are on.


As with most Mayne buildings, the exterior is almost entirely glass which allows for a lot of light and the exterior takes a unique form. There are large open spaces and areas for community interaction.



Out of most of Mayne’s buildings this one is actually my least favorite. While the style is still using glass, steel, and cement which are some of the materials Mayne is most notable for using, this building doesn’t make me feel invited or wanting to walk in (which could just be because it’s the Department of Transportation). I feel this building lacks that same charm Mayne’s buildings create. The grey colors used on the exterior I feel make the building appear  less welcoming. I do like the building still has a unique shape which makes it interesting to look at. The large “100” is a cool feature though and I have enjoyed learning about Thomas Mayne and what he has contributed to the architectural community.

-Austin Branch

3 thoughts on “Caltrans District 7 Headquarters – Post #8”

  1. When I go back to Los Angeles, I need to take a look at this place! When I was there this past December I wish I had known it was there. Love the open look with fewer walls. Thanks Austin!

  2. Austin-you didn’t give us any of your feelings about the architecture-just reported on it-not what I wanted!

    1. Thank you for bringing this to my attention! I apologize and have gone back and added my feelings about the architecture at the end of each post.

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