After some initial groundbreaking work that began about a year ago that created a large sunken pit to prepare for the project’s foundation and underground parking, the massive Oceanwide Plaza project (formerly known as Fig Central) has remained seemingly dormant without any other construction activity on this sprawling 4.6 acre site located directly across the Staples Center. Many have wondered what the heck is going on with Chinese developer Oceanwide’s $1 billion project, which is another huge game changing development for red hot South Park.
The long delay in construction will be coming to end soon according to the South Park BID. Starting on March 11, the site will be humming with activity as the concrete pour begins for the project’s foundation. A total of 27,000 cubic yards of concrete mix will be poured that will require a total of four weekends to complete, each requiring a 24-hour period of continuous pouring starting at 11 pm on Friday lasting until 11 pm on Saturday. Eleventh Street between Figueroa and Flower will be closed during the pour.
Besides the exciting reboot of construction activity, some other big changes are coming to the $1 billion mega project. As DTLA Rising reported last year, the new luxury Roberto Cavalli hotel brand was initially chosen as the hotel flag for Oceanwide Plaza. However, it is now confirmed that the Cavalli brand is definitely out and another high-end brand will replace it. Sources have informed me that Hyatt’s most prestigious brand, Park Hyatt, might be the replacement and would be inspired by “hotels in Asia, like Tokyo.” This would be Park Hyatt’s only urban hotel west of Chicago if it is eventually set in stone.
When the project is completed in 2018/2019, Oceanwide Plaza will have three towers — one 49-story tower comprised of a 183-room hotel and two 40-story residential towers totaling 504 luxury condos — and over 150,000 square feet of commercial retail space on the ground floor.
But hold up! Will the “Oceanwide” moniker actually stick? Some rumors on the street are saying Oceanwide is looking to unload the property to another investor/developer possibly due to the economic turmoil recently experienced in China. Let’s just hope this thing gets built on time.
[Update 2/3/16: Got an email from Oceanwide shortly after this was posted confirming that the hotel operator has not been finalized yet and denying that Oceanwide is planning to sell the project saying that Oceanwide Holdings in Beijing “has no intention on turning this great opportunity outwards and still solidly operating and developing this beautiful structure.”]