RMW: the blog

Roslyn's photography, art, cats, exploring, writing, life

Saturday adventure part four – my first look at the DWP


music center - dept water & power

We certainly covered a lot of ground on our photography expedition two weekends ago and I was thoroughly enjoying myself being in the company of other photographers.

From the Bradbury Building we moved on to the Music Center (officially named Performing Arts Center of Los Angeles County) consisting of  Walt Disney Concert Hall, Dorothy Chandler Pavilion, Ahmanson Theatre and Mark Taper Forum. I have more than my share of photos of this venue and I should create a separate post about it some other time.

So this day, while the others were getting their shots of these buildings, the instructor suggested I should walk across the street and check out the Department of Water & Power building. In all the millions of times I have been to the Music Center I have never crossed the street to look at the DWP!

The photo above is the facade of the DWP building taken from Grand Avenue, looking up the steps at the Music Center.

department of water & power

The DWP building (renamed the John Ferraro Building in 2000) is surrounded by water… you could call it a moat. Follow this link for a good aerial photo of the building when it first opened.

department of water & power

The building was completed in 1965, during the same period as the opening of the Music Center across the street (1964-67). The photo above shows part of the downtown skyline with the 2003 Walt Disney Concert Hall poking its nose in from the left.

Like most buildings around LA it has starred in movies, most notably the 2010 sci fi film, Inception.department of water & power

The DWP’s campaign to have homeowners install drought tolerant gardens is exemplified by the landscaping around the building.

department of water & power

Front yards can look really beautiful without water hogging lawns.

department of water & powerFill up your water bottles here with pure tap water. I did, thank you!

department of water & power

The Los Angeles Philharmonic winters at the Music Center then moves to the Hollywood Bowl for the summer. To the right are the Mark Taper Forum (far right behind the plant) and the Ahmanson. Santa Monica Mountains are in the background.

department of water & power

Building in the center is Library Tower (US Bank Building), at 73 stories the tallest building west of Chicago. They are building a viewing platform near the top… yes, I will plonk down my $25 for some spectacular photos on a clear day!

department of water & power

The Dorothy Chandler Pavilion, the first module of the Music Center to be completed (1964). Adorned with the usual tour buses.

department of water & power

A better view of the Mark Taper Forum.

department of water & power

Los Angeles City Hall located at the far end of Grand Park, four blocks down the hill.


department of water & power

Wonderful patterns in the water like abstract paintings.


department of water & power

I assume that all the water is recycled. During our drought any non-recycling water features are supposed to be turned off. I don’t see why any water fountains or pools would not be recycling water to start with. In my opinion, turning off the water is harmful to birds and another creatures who depend on it. And, I admit, I like to see water features!


dept-water-power-071115-044-C-750pxIn these last two photos you can see how the reflecting pool extends out and over the ground below. The pool forms the roof of the parking garage below.

department of water & power


I have more photos from other places we visited on this day but in order to catch up my posts about other things I have been doing since then I will leave it at this for now. Now that I’ve “discovered” the John Ferraro Building I want to return and take more pictures there too.

All photos and content copyright roslyn m wilkins. Please feel free to pass along this post via email or social media, but if you wish to use some of our images or text outside of the context of this blog, either give full credit to myself and link to One Good Life in Los Angeles, or contact us for proper usage. Thanks!

Author: RMW

I am an explorer and creative person. I've had many jobs, careers and interests... everything in life and the universe fascinates me. Born in Brighton, England, I've lived my entire adult life in Los Angeles, California. A few years ago I rediscovered photography which is a great excuse to get outside and look. I'm also in the process of re-writing some of my unpublished short stories and possibly a novel. .

3 thoughts on “Saturday adventure part four – my first look at the DWP

  1. These are fantastic photos, Roslyn. I with you on the fountains, it doesn’t really make sense.

    Liked by 1 person

  2. Very interesting profile on this building; I’m also really interested in drought tolerant plants.

    Liked by 1 person

  3. The landscape is excellent – the graffiti on the stairs is striking! Awesome captures 🙂

    Liked by 1 person

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