OTL to Design + Construct Public Art at Hillsdale Shopping Center

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Water Feature Construction

ORANGE COUNTY, CALIFORNIA, (January 09, 2017)  Outside the Lines (OTL), a design-build construction company that specializes in creating one-of-a-kind water features, rockwork and themed environments, has announced the design and construction of a show fountain that will serve as a public art piece for the renovation of Bohannon Development Company’s Hillsdale Shopping Center, according to J. Wickham Zimmerman, Chief Executive Officer of OTL.

Bohannon and general contractor C.W. Driver have partnered with OTL and landscape architect Lifescapes International to create a unique fountain that satisfies San Mateo’s Art in Public Places city ordinance.  ELS Architecture and Urban Design is the architect for the property renovation.

“The City of San Mateo requires any project valued at $3 million or more to install art in publicly accessible places,” Zimmerman explains.

“In order to accommodate the City’s requirement, we are designing something unique that can be enjoyed as both an entertainment feature and as an art piece.”

Wickham Zimmerman, Chief Executive Officer of OTL

Scott E. Bohannon, Senior Vice President of Bohannon Development Company adds, “OTL has been essential in fulfilling the project’s public art requirement. In addition to designing a fountain that pushes the artistic envelope, the firm was part of the team that presented the art proposal to San Mateo’s Civic Arts Committee. We are confident that OTL’s work will attract art lovers and shoppers who will become art lovers at our newly renovated Hillsdale Shopping Center.”

OTL has designed and will construct the 1,871 square-foot show fountain in Hillsdale’s main public plaza. The firm is partnering closely with Lifescapes International to interweave living planter pockets into the fountain’s interior.

According to Zimmerman, these unique features are key in ensuring that the center’s water feature also functions as a work of art.

“In order to create a fountain that is truly artwork, the design has to make an artistic statement on its own,” he says. “By visualizing a custom shape and form, and integrating live planters and complex lighting, we are creating something truly exceptional for the San Mateo community.”

OTL’s fountain will be surrounded by gathering and seating areas, highlighting the new public art piece, and transforming the space into a gallery where visitors can sit and gaze at the piece.

“While viewers may sit for a time, the fountain’s interest and complexity will invite people to walk around it and experience it from different viewpoints in the same way that traditional art is often viewed,” Zimmerman adds.

The entertainment show fountain will consist of 71 individually controlled aerated nozzles choreographed at low display heights to create rich fountain effects, which will not disturb the living planter pockets in the fountain basin. In addition, the fountain will boast 142 color changing LED lights that will be individually choreographed.

“Each of our show fountains becomes its own attraction for the local communities in which they are built,” Zimmerman says. “In this case, we’re excited to break ground on a vibrant piece that will become part of the community’s art and culture in a way that goes well beyond a more traditional, stationary sculpture.”

The fountain is expected to be completed in Q4 2018.

Hillsdale Shopping Center is a retail destination located in the heart of San Mateo. The renovations, expected to be complete by the end of 2018, will bring a luxury movie theater, fitness club, and an upscale bowling and bocce operation to the city.

The retail destination is located at Sixty 31st Avenue in San Mateo, California.


See the article in its entirety at one of the following news outlets:

The Registry San Francisco
The Patch

Image Credits: ELS Architecture and Urban Design


Katie Clendening or Jenn Quader
Brower, Miller & Cole
(949) 955-7940