064. Lomo Featured Project: The Donut Hole. The Giant Donuts of Los Angeles. Lomo Building Types.

by James Black. Permalink

According to the LA Conservancy’s website, the Donut Hole, at 15300 Amar Road in La Puente, was constructed in 1968. Unlike the other giant donut buildings in which the donut is a sign appended to the building, the Donut Hole legitimately integrates the donut into its architecture, technically qualifying it as Programmatic Architecture, meaning that the building resembles the product on sale therein. If Randy’s Donuts et al. are literally decorated sheds, then the Donut Hole is something closer to the Long Island Duck.


The Donut Hole is conspicuously sited in a narrow promontory of land at the junction of two roads, and it is itself a drive-through building, capped with the arch of a donut at each end. These are semi-circular arches, so I suppose they qualify as Romanesque.


It might seem to go without saying that such a building should qualify as a specimen of Lower Modernism, and this is accurate for both programmatic as well as formal reasons. A mid-century drive-thru donut stand occupies the Lomo crossroads where modernity intersects laziness.


Subtract those fiberglass donuts and you are left with a building of generic plainness. Owls protect it.


Donuts aside, the Donut Hole consists of two stuccoed rectangular volumes on either side of a driveway, capped above by a flat plank-and-beam ramada of a roof, creating an ambiguously indoor-outdoor space that is open 24 hours and in which donuts of all types are on display behind glass.


The drive-through lane divides a front-of-house kitchen from a back-of-house storage and utility space. The most similar type of building organizationally may be the drive-thru A-frame Wienerschnitzel, a photo of which you may find here.


They serve a great glazed old-fashioned here.

This post has no comments.

Latest Posts:

063. The Giant Donuts of Los Angeles. Lomo Building Types. Bicycle Tour.

The Giant Donuts of Los Angeles Bicycle Tour took place on March 6, 2016. Seven of us embarked on the challenge of riding a 55-mile loop through southeastern Los Angeles County with stops at eight of the ten extant donut shops that integrate giant donuts into their architecture. Six of us completed the ride, but […] Read more

062. Giant Donuts of Los Angeles Bicycle Tour.

Mark your calendar for Sunday, March 6, 2016, for the Giant Donuts of Los Angeles bicycle tour. At least ten extant Giant Donuts, apotheoses of programmatic architecture, remain throughout the Southland. Architecture Burger’s Smart Patrol will survey eight of them and sample their wares during a vigorous, donut-powered, 55-mile loop ride. The tour will cover […] Read more

061. Matchbook Delight! Part 15, The Chart House.

Today the Chart House is a chain of steak and seafood restaurants owned since 2002 by Landry’s, the owner of an empire of high-end chain-restaurant brands such as Morton’s, Claim Jumper, and McCormick & Schmick’s. Judging by the Yelp! reviews, the remaining Los Angeles-area locations are expensive and mediocre. Despite its present mediocrity, the Chart […] Read more

All Posts