Security Pacific National Bank | Los Angeles Conservancy
Photo courtesy Architectural Resources Group

Security Pacific National Bank

By the early 1970s, Craig Ellwood’s office was not just an architecture and design firm; it was a brand of architecture.

Ellwood parlayed his early success as a designer of residential buildings into larger projects, including corporate towers and office parks.

According to Stephen Woolley, an associate in Ellwood’s office, clients approached the Ellwood office without restrictions on their buildings’ designs because they were afraid of changing the product from a true Ellwood building into something else.

The ten-story Security Pacific National Bank building was built for the Maguire Partnership, a real estate developer who also commissioned Ellwood to design additions to the Signal Oil Building/Pacific Telephone Building in downtown Los Angeles.

The Security Pacific National Bank building embodies the Corporate International style with a reinforced concrete frame clad in bronze anodized aluminum and curtain walls of bronze-tinted glass. Ellwood had built his work into a brand, but by this point in his career many of the buildings were actually designed by other architects working in his office. The Security Pacific National Bank was designed primarily by Jim Tyler.

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Photo courtesy Architectural Resources Group

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California Institute of the Arts
Photo by Scott Groller, copyright CalArts 2006

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Photo from Tom Gardner Collection/Conservancy archives

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