Monday, November 4, 2013

Photo Essay: Last Chance Look at Linda Vista Hospital (Roof, Boiler Room, Kitchen & More)

I've long been fascinated with Linda Vista Community Hospital, which stands vacant in East LA's Boyle Heights neighborhood. It's not abandoned, per se, but it's been closed as a hospital for over 20 years, and only used as a film location since.

I managed to get in there once, earlier this year, but I'd snuck in, so the whole time I was spooked about getting kicked out.

I got in again this weekend. And this time, it was sanctioned.



The Linda Vista Hospital was the latest venue to be selected by the Heidi Duckler Dance Theatre, a troupe known for its site-specific productions in unusual places, often historically and architecturally significant buildings - and, sometimes, on them.



Their contemporary dance performance would give attendees their last opportunity to see the place before it undergoes a major renovation to turn it into affordable senior housing [Ed 11/4/13 10:50 p.m. PT: to be called "Hollenbeck Terrace," a nod to the park across the street, named after former LA councilman John Edward Hollenbeck, a capitalist and early settler of the Boyle Heights area, east of the LA River].



Wanting the chance to see as much of the rest of the hospital as I could during daylight, we went to the performance early for a special pre-show cocktail party...



...on the roof, a vantage point from which you can really appreciate the sprawl of this huge medical complex, whose perimeter I'd walked once, but whose smokestack and Spanish tile roofs I'd missed.



There's an exterior staircase that leads to the rooftop deck (an extension of the sixth floor), but there are also interior stairwells that lead farther down...





...to the fifth floor.



Similar to the rooms found on the ground floor, the fifth floor is mostly empty...



...with some leftover debris and artifacts...



...but the walls are disgustingly splattered...



...everywhere you go.



Wires hang out of walls...





...while equipment gathers some of the splatter.



The rooms, hallways, and stairwells are dank and dingy...



...leading down to a comparatively bright institutional kitchen...





...which has not avoided the splatter.



It's hard to imagine visiting a patient here. It's hard to imagine being hospitalized here. At one time, letters were patients' only contact with the outside world.



The event brought us down to an area probably rarely accessed by patients admitted to Linda Vista: the boiler room.



Full of pipes...



...and broken glass...



...fluorescent-lit vestiges from the hospital's once-working operations...



...and more pipes (one of which decided to burst during Saturday night's performance).



In its current iteration, Linda Vista is never short on long, spooky, dark hallways...



...which will soon be converted to house people once again.



It's hard to imagine anyone wanting to live in this place, notoriously haunted, eerily imposing...



...the fire escape appearing like peeling white prison bars.

That being said, I can't wait to see what they do with the place.

Stay tuned for photos from the Heidi Duckler Dance Theatre performance of The Groundskeepers.

Related Posts:
Photo Essay: Linda Vista Community Hospital, Abandoned, Exterior
Photo Essay: Linda Vista Community Hospital, Abandoned, Interior