Travelers and commuters at the new Redondo Beach Transit Center will pass through a "Gate Wave" when they enter and exit the building, the City Council decided Tuesday night.
Acting against the staff's recommendation, the Council voted almost unanimously (Councilman Steve Aspel abstained) to approve the sculpture "Gate Wave," designed by Volkan Alkanoglu and Marc Fornes, over the recommended "Re-Route," designed by Kathleen Caricof.
Artist Joshua Wiener's "Catching the Bus," which depicted a group of concrete buses swarming in the air like a school of fish, was also considered.
"I think [Gate Wave]'s a dramatic statement," said Mayor Mike Gin during discussion of all three pieces.
Nevertheless, all of the councilmen expressed concern that the swooping design of the sculpture would make it a prime target for skateboarders; however, Councilman Bill Brand said he wasn't worried.
"I know there are small fixes you can do to alleviate skateboarding," he said, noting that skateboarders tend to avoid uneven surfaces.
Alkanoglu said he was amenable to adding raised steel strips in the gaps between the wood at the base of the sculpture.
Councilmen were also worried about the ocean air's effect on the anodized aluminum shapes near the top of the sculpture, but Alkanoglu said he would work with the city to make sure the sculpture will withstand the elements.
Despite their ultimate decision, the councilmen and the mayor all expressed how difficult the choice was, saying that all three of the sculptures would be wonderful to have.
"We're actually getting art in the city," Councilman Steven Diels said. "This is amazing."
City staff had recommended "Re-Route," which was to be comprised of four abstract sculptures, because it conformed to the proposed public art specifications for the Transit Center.