Week 9 Activity- Architecture and Urban Planning

My cognitive map
My cognitive map

After last week’s remix activity in Art 110, it was time to switch gears and do an activity based on architecture and urban planning. To be candid, I was not sure what the cognitive map was about; I did not know if we, the students, had to attempt to draw CSULB accurately without a map or whether we had to draw it based on what mattered to us. Nevertheless, my cognitive map can be seen to the right, and if the latter is what we had to do, then that is what is shown on my map: the things that interest me.

The building that I selected for the “Adopt a Building” section of the activity was the library because I love books and I love to read and that is what a library is all about, also because I like to hangout at the computer lab in the CSULB library sometimes and kick back. I did not have time to walk into the library and interview library employees or students but I did research some history about the library at the university website, and I learned that in 1949 when CSULB was founded, it was named “Los Angeles-Orange County State College”; the classes were held in an apartment building on Anaheim Road and the library was yet to be constructed.

The one-story library
The one-story library

In 1950, the college was renamed “Long Beach State College” and it was granted 320 acres of land. In 1951, the library was moved to its permanent site where it was combined with another building, making the previous library capable of seating only 48 students grow to 96. Two years later, a ceremony was held in which plans to construct a bigger library were discussed, and it was not until 1955 when the library would be complete, capable of seating 300 students. Two years later, however, there was an announcement for the one-story library to undergo construction yet again, where it would become a three-story building and constitute an area of 74,000 square feet.

Students studying at the Long Beach State College Library
Students studying at the Long Beach State College Library

When the library first opened, it contained only 5,508 volumes and it would possess nearly 100,000 volumes by the year 1960. In the year of 1972, the library would undergo its final metamorphosis and contain the six-stories that it has today, where seating reached 4,000, making it the largest library of all the libraries in the CSU system.

This was the library’s last major construction but it would be remodeled from 2006 to 2007, probably around the time in which the Starbucks was added to it, judging by the newspaper articles hanging upon the walls outside the bathrooms in the library.

I must be honest that I am perfectly content with the way that the university looks today, but if I could remodel it or change anything about it, I would add even more trees, although it already has plenty. I love nature and the university is full of it but the area that I would focus on would be the lawn at upper campus, in between the lecture halls and the Fine Arts buildings (featured image). I would add more trees to this area because there are only a few trees there and a lot of grass, which makes it look plain.

The CSULB Library today
The CSULB Library today

I know that there are reasons as to why there are no trees in this area, since it is at this area where the graduation ceremony is held and where the “Week Of Welcome” is hosted, but if I could, I would add more trees; it would make it look nicer. Now that I think about it, it would not be just this area that I would like to make more natural, but the campus as a whole, such as making the bridge that connects Brotman Hall to the area near the CBA Buildings, out of wood. I love nature so attending a university full of nature and wild scenery would be awesome to me! I doubt that will ever be the case but nevertheless, it was cool designing the campus my way.

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