Frank G. Wells Building

Merit Award

The Frank G. Wells Building is a five-story office building adjacent to the Main Alameda gate on Disney's Burbank Studio lot. It is a large building designed to be sympathetic with both the low-key Kem Weber buildings that make up the fabric of the campus, and the grand Team Disney Building that it faces. It is laid out as a loft building with standard leasable office depths surrounding an interior courtyard. The modest materials of the base building are replaced by more precious materials at the entry. The 2D porcelain enamel film reel spins off a 3D film strip, which becomes the entrance sign. The lobby interiors are done in black and white imagery with walls covered in digitally pixelated marble acting as a backdrop for the brushed aluminum info desk and patterned terrazzo floor.

Jury Comments: 

"The jury applauded the architect's concept and execution of this important new building on the Walt Design Imagineering Corporate Campus. This is a straightforward building with a flat facade that was made exciting by incorporating large scaled porcelain panels depicting film reels into the facade. These added visual variety and depth to an otherwise utilitarian exterior. Integration of porcelain into the cement plaster facade was exceptionally well detailed, and the basic design themes were carried over the entrance canopy, throughout the interior of the public space, and on the facades of the interior courtyard of the building. The jury applauded the skill with which this design approach - a direction that can easily deteriorate into simple facade decoration and cliche - was so elegantly executed in the Wells Building."

Design Firm: 

Venturi, Scott Brown & Associates, HKS Architects


Walt Disney Imagineering Corporate Real Estate

Location City: 

Burbank, California

Project Area: 


Open Date: 


Project Budget: 


Photo Credits: 

Matt Wargo

Design Team: 

Robert Venturi (Principal in Charge), Claudia Cueto, Steven Izenour, Timothy Kearney, Amy Noble, Denise Scott Brown, Brian Wurst


C/S Erectors, McCarthy Construction


American Porcelain Enamel Co., American West Sign Company

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