Everyone wants more retail options in Downtown LA. And more retail options we shall get. One of the most exciting redevelopment projects in Downtown LA will be the complete overhaul of Macy’s Plaza, which includes 2.4 million square feet of commercial space comprising a mix of retail, hotel, and office. The new $160 million makeover of Macy’s Plaza will be renamed The Bloc and will be redeveloped by its new owner The Ratkovich Company (they acquired the property back in May 2013 for $241 million).
The new renderings released today, now on The Bloc’s website, show a completely transformed retail center that actively engages 7th Street. The atrium has been removed making it into an outdoor center, and the escalators along with a new sprawling staircase leading into the lower level (where NYC’s Eataly is purportedly considering), have been relocated closer to the sidewalk providing easier access and helping to draw more pedestrians into the complex.
In addition, a second story retail level has been added in the renderings allowing for potentially larger retail tenants. Existing tenants that will be staying, such as Macy’s and Sheraton Hotel, have been revamped and are updated to current design standards. Macy’s will be updated to flagship status, according to sources, offering a higher quality selection of brand merchandising. Sheraton Hotel will be receiving a $40 million upgrade as well.
One of the most exciting new features about The Bloc, shown in a couple of renderings, are LA Metro subway signs located on the lower level. These Metro signs mean a direct pedestrian connection to the 7th/Metro subway station across the street from within the mall itself. Many urban and transit-oriented cities around the world (like New York, Tokyo, London, etc.) have subway entrances linking to shopping centers, etc. As I previously mentioned in an earlier post, Metro designed many of the subway stations with “knock out panels” that allow for future expansion of certain stations, and in this case, allowing for a direct pedestrian connection to The Bloc.
Construction on The Bloc will take about 2 years starting in early 2014 and completing in late 2015.
All renderings courtesy of The Bloc.
What Macy’s Plaza looks like today