USC Caruso Catholic Center

Los Angeles, CA

The Caruso Catholic Center continues the tradition of building with deep architectural integrity on USC’s stately urban campus. Coalescing around the stone cathedral and its forecourt, the site planning for the new buildings allows for procession and formal events. The adjacent student center marries its exterior cladding to the historic USC look and feel and is fronted by both the stone plaza and an outdoor area that offers a shaded and casual setting for small group gatherings. A fascinating aspect of the assignment was working with three distinct clients on one relatively small site—the Donor, USC, and the Archdiocese of Los Angeles. The result resonates with integrity while meeting the various goals of its mission beautifully.

Gardens of red and gold surround the plaza and unite the Catholic Center with the architecture and spirit of the USC campus.

The student center opens into a courtyard of café tables and lawn, with sculptural California Sycamores that shade the plaza spring through fall, allowing winter sun to warm the space.