Los Angeles, CA
Built in 1973, the contiguous project consisted of a 32-story, 800,000-square-foot office building, an enclosed two-story 420,000-square-foot shopping mall (anchored by Macy’s), and a six-level parking structure with 2,000 parking spaces. The full block also included a 485-room hotel. In 2013, National and a local partner purchased the property. At purchase, the office building was only 56% leased and the retail component suffered from a lackluster mix of tenants and dated design. National Development and a local developer concepted a dramatic redevelopment plan, including renaming the project, The Bloc.
In 2013, the downtown LA real estate market was undergoing a renaissance and transforming into a 24-hour district with an expanding population base, spurred by new residential activity, entertainment venues, cultural amenities, and sports facilities. The Bloc was well-positioned to participate in this revitalization given its prime location centered between the financial and civic district to the north and the Staples-Convention Center to the south, as well as surrounding apartment tower construction. The redevelopment plan centered around ripping the roof off of the enclosed retail center to create an open-air, inviting retail experience with a large public plaza serving as the living room of downtown. In addition to the common area improvements, the retail and office spaces were completely updated in conjunction with a strategic re-leasing plan. Best-in-class amenities, such as a rooftop lounge, were added as part of the renovation program.