For the third consecutive year, Gregg Maedo + Associates participated in the charity event Canstruction Orange County 2014 and successfully competed against some of the “giants” of the corporate world.  And, for the second straight year, we are happy to have been recognized by the jurors of the competition for our design and won an award, this time for “Structural Ingenuity”.

During Canstruction, teams compete against each other to build creative structures out of canned goods to be put on display for the month of September at the South Coast Plaza shopping center in Costa Mesa, CA. The structures are judged and awards are announced during the CANstruction Awards Gala.  Afterwards, all of the food is donated to the Orange County Food Bank. In our case, 2,710 cans were donated.

As the smallest company to participate in Canstruction Orange County, we turned to local groups in an effort to help fundraise for this event. As in previous years, our participation with the Orange Coast Optimist Club, (OCO), a youth community service organization that teaches the kids the importance of helping others and supporting their local community, that also happens to have an outstanding basketball program, was critical in raising funds to purchase the cans and other materials. GM+A is a strong supporter of OCO and as part of that support, has participated in a 476 team basketball tournament at the Long Beach Pyramid organized mainly by OCO.

We used the event to fundraise, and thanks in part to the hard work of those kids, who helped with sales of our signature “Spam Musubi” during the event, we were able to raise enough funds to cover all of the expenses to enter Canstruction this year. This cooperative effort between GM+A and OCO was a success and provided valuable experience in helping the kids to learn about serving the community.

This year, after months of planning, the creative GM+A team built “Canzilla” inspired by the iconic Godzilla. Our motto was “Destroy Hunger”.  Our basic fundamental office design philosophy for all our projects has been to do the next one better, to push and challenge ourselves, to seek to build upon and improve upon each design every time.  In keeping with that concept, the Canstruction OC 2014 event allowed us to create and execute something special.

Canzilla started with a rough sketch and the obstacle of constructing this “can formed” monster to stand on his own. We were met with many challenges, such as the weight of the cans, the angle of the head and neck, and the overall size of Canzilla. The GM+A team refined and developed the design to tackle the problems that arose.  The methods we use on all our projects, we applied here. This long process of ingenuity and cooperation, 3D modeling and mock-up experimentation, vision and revision, led to a design which was both structurally sound and stylish, and resulted in a jaw dropping reaction from the public when it went on display!

We at Gregg Maedo + Associates know that the only limits to great design are really “Time, Money, and Patience.” For Canzilla, we in essence controlled all three, putting us in the unique position of being the client, designer, and contractor. This allowed us to experience the full range of these important design components—from the creation, to the cost, and finally the realization of CANzilla.

It is currently on display at the South Coast Plaza until the end of the month of September.


Gayle Anderson from KTLA’s Good Morning News interviewed Justin Abraham & Rhonna Del Rio-Ascolese on Monday, use the link below to watch the interview:

GM+A Canstruction 2014, CANzilla featured in KTLA Good Morning NEWS LIVE!!!


Watch the time lapse video of the GM+A team building the great Canzilla: