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Architect & LEGO Enthusiast collaborate to create LEGO model of Urbana building

I had the pleasure of interviewing Serafin Maranan of Architects Orange and LEGO Artist Christina Griffin Hull about their collaboration to bring the architecture firm's latest building to life as a LEGO model.  It was really interesting to learn about how Serafin brought his experience as an architect, and Christina helped translate architectural language into LEGO elements.

LEGO Model of "Urbana" in San Diego.

Serafin explained that “Urbana is a 6 story mixed-use infill project in downtown San Diego. It contains 96 rental units and over 1,100 square feet of retail. It has garnered many design awards and one of Architects Orange’s seminal projects.”

Photo of the real building.

I shared some highlights from the interview here, and you can read the whole article at 

Serafin: “Christina and I complemented each other. As an architect, I understand and appreciate scale, proportion, accent, color, detail and alignment to make the kit of parts fit my vision of the model. But Christina’s vast understanding of what LEGO parts to use and innate understanding of LEGO building techniques to execute my vision was paramount to the model’s success.”

Christina: “Serafin came into the shop with ... blueprints, photos, and drawings for me to work off of. He came in every few weeks to check in on the build. ... The most helpful was when he would mark up the photos of the model and send them back to me.”

Some details from the LEGO Model

Christina: “We tried to come in with the model reflecting the overall “feeling” of the buildings design while showing “pops” of details that were precise.”

Urbana in profile.  LEGO Model and Architect's renderings.

Serafin: “I would like to use LEGO in our office as a design or presentation tool if the right opportunity arises but I’m not sure if we have anyone in our office who can do that or have access to so many parts.”

For the whole interview and more photos, visit 





  • ScatterbugScatterbug Member Posts: 109
    Interesting article. The building itself looks like a 1970's Majorcan hotel.
  • legogallegogal Member Posts: 754
    Haha...I agree! Very nice build and story. Someone knows how to use their bricks!
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