Winery is the last
in downtown Los
and urban sprawl.
Angeles work its way to becoming a vertical city.
Commercial real estate developers are buying
up parking lots and erecting live-work-playlearn environments for a hungry generation of
buyers. Investors are buying up empty lots in
residential neighborhoods such as Silver Lake
and Eagle Rock to build modern-day row houses
with shared walls, an unthinkable feature just a
few years ago.
It may be as simple as the fact that the Greatest current
up watching Seinfeld, Martin says. saw that they could live across
the hallway from friends and go downstairs to
their favorite It also may be that
they afford a $2 million home in Pasadena.
This is a generation ready for a more vertical
Some wryly suggest that AC Martin designed
half the buildings in this city. Chris
grandfather, Albert C., with John Parkinson
and John C. Austin, designed the elegant art
deco City Hall in 1928. The City Hall navigational
beacon, named after national hero and aviator
Charles Lindbergh, still shines at night. For
years, city leaders would take prominent guests
to the top and show off the sweeping vistas: the
end of the continent, the San Gabriel Moun-
tains, the oil fields. Guests were wowed by the
promise and optimism of this Western city.
In spite of the permanently springlike
weather, the city stayed small and sleepy until
World War II, which produced two explosions
for Southern California: one in the economy
and the other in real estate. The war brought
manufacturing of battleships and airplanes,
and, later, military technology to fight the Cold
War. Hollywood was internationally renowned
and aerospace was the largest employer, spurring growth in suburbs and city space west of
downtown, while downtown LA itself remained
Soon after development of the Staples
Center downtown in 1999, by
reuse of warehouse
among those who recognized that Los Angeles was ready for the idea of
Today, downtown LA to those in the
know) is finally bustling again at night as
gorgeous, abandoned department stores and
office buildings are filled with apartments and
Los Angeles is finally benefitting from its
investment in infrastructure, says Paul Keller,
founding principal and CEO of Mack Urban.
Keller is the real estate developer and investor
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