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Top O Topanga Community Center Nominated in Top Ten of Mid-Century Architectural Gems; Vote Closes
December 17, 2009 - By Dawn Moore
Its time to vote again. This time for another Topanga icon.
PHOTO BY TERESA HAMES
There is no shortage of mid-century architectural gems in Los Angeles, but perched at the summit of Topanga Canyon is our very own icon of modernism. Iconic to anyone who has traversed Topanga Canyon for 50 years, this soaring 35-foot A-frame, designed and built in 1961 by E.V. Mikles of Oxnard, was conceived as the lure to destination living at Top O Topanga. With exterior planes that jut at opposing angles and a bold series of beams that anchor the structure to the surrounding canyon terrain, it continues in use as originally intendedas a private community center.
Original oak parquet flooring, stone fireplace and Mondrian-esque floor-to-ceiling glass maximize the structures site embracing sweeping views of the west San Fernando Valley. A unique example of an architectural style that enjoyed a brief moment early 1950s through late 1960s of mid-century popularity, the A-frame was used to conjure images of leisure through modernisms foundation in geometry and thus was successfully employed in this application as attested to by the continued stream of bohemian residents.