Brooks + Scarpa’s new Gateway Sculpture, “Portoval,” has been unveiled to the public at the opening of the new City of Pembroke Pines City Center Civic Complex in South Florida. The City Center includes a public plaza, a 3,500-seat performing arts hall, the city hall, and The Frank art gallery. The Gateway Sculpture and corresponding landscape features were designed to complement a variety of public activities and programs. Essentially, Pembroke Pines was a city without a downtown or community space, and the new City Center and Gateway Sculpture provide a community anchor.
The artists, Lawrence Scarpa and Jeffrey Huber, worked with The Gateway Sculpture and landscape elements to frame a pedestrian portal to a new public plaza, providing wayfinding and solidifying a sense of arrival. The 26-foot-tall stainless steel, enamel-coated sculpture emerges as four tree columns that transform into a collection of perforated plates that spin in the continuous breeze of South Florida. The experience under the sculpture creates a dappled light effect as people walk between bromeliad mounds—an experience like that of a subtropical hardwood forest. The sculpture provides a shaded area for seating, as well as programmable up-lighting that enhances user experience during the day or at night. During performances and art events, the gateway will be a meeting ground for pre- and post-show activities, and a gathering place for the community.
While the Pembroke Pines Gateway Sculpture has no mechanical systems nor components that require continued resources from the utility grid, the structure is designed and constructed to last well into the future and remain maintenance-free from the harsh coastal conditions of South Florida.
Photography courtesy of Brooks + Scarpa