Author: Brigham Yen

Brigade LA has opened a new 3,000 square foot store at LA Live's Courtyard by Marriott in South Park, Downtown LA

New Brigade LA Store Brings Fashion Trends to LA Live in Downtown LA

Back in June 2016, we announced that one of Downtown LA’s most successful independent retailers — the purveyor of fashion’s hottest trends and accessories, Brigade LA — was opening a brand new and exciting flagship location at LA Live in Downtown LA’s burgeoning South Park district. About a half a year later, Brigade LA has opened its new store adding to a growing mix of businesses coalescing around LA Live and the Staples Center.

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Ranked America's most popular fast food chain, Chick-Fil-A, will be opening at the Figueroa Tower at 7th and Figueroa

Chick-Fil-A to Open First Downtown LA Location on 7th Street

DTLA is about to “eat mor chikin.” America’s most lucrative fast food restaurant chain is finally coming to Downtown LA opening in the heart of the Financial District. According to Business Insider, Chick-Fil-A generates the highest revenue per restaurant over any other fast food chain in the country. It’s also apparently the most popular fast food chain in the country, even surprisingly, besting the venerated In-N-Out Burger in recent customer survey rankings.

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Blue Bottle opens its second DTLA location (outside Arts District) inside the historic 1893 Bradbury Building at 3rd and Broadway

Blue Bottle Coffee Opens in Downtown LA’s Historic Bradbury Building

Back in June 2015, we reported the exciting news that Blue Bottle Coffee was coming to the Bradbury Building in Downtown LA, which would become its second DTLA location after the Arts District. Well fast forward a year and half later, and the popular third-wave coffee chain has finally opened at the corner of 3rd and Broadway signaling yet another strong sign that Broadway is actually, really turning a corner in its long-awaited revitalization.

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The new Footaction store near 8th and Broadway is another retail win for the rising historic thoroughfare

New Footaction and Kicks Lounge Open on Broadway in Downtown LA

Sneakerheads rejoice! The brand new Footaction with Nike Kicks Lounge opened today December 18 on Broadway in Downtown LA. The store coming to Downtown LA’s most significant historical street was announced this past summer in July while the store took only about 5 months to complete build out just in time for the holidays. What was previously a lower-end discount clothing store that still sadly defines much of Broadway today, has been transformed into a polished storefront that stands in complete contrast to most of its immediate surroundings near 8th and Broadway.

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The busiest station in Los Angeles' growing rail network, 7th/Metro Center, will be connected directly into The Bloc by a new pedestrian tunnel

New Metro Pedestrian Tunnel in Downtown LA Opening Jan 2017

Not all exciting developments have to be large-scale mega projects (although what DTLA fan isn’t absolutely thrilled by all the recent high-rise proposals from South Park to the Civic Center to the Arts District?). For me, I am often just as excited by the smaller-scale urban developments happening on the ground level that’s focused on enhancing the pedestrian experience, and in this case, what’s happening underground. After speaking to two different Metro contractors onsite, they both have told me that the new Metro pedestrian tunnel linking the 7th/Metro Center subway station to The Bloc shopping center will be completed early next month!

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The new 5,000 square foot Petco store opened in Downtown LA's South Park district on Dec 5, 2016

New Petco Store Opens in South Park in Downtown LA

Pet lovers rejoice! And since Downtown LA is chock-full of residents with their furry pets, there should be quite a few downtowners happy to see that Petco has finally opened their doors for business this past week selling everything a pet owner could possibly need. It’s also another sign that large chains, who once shunned downtown, are finally beginning to see Downtown LA as a viable and desirable location to open their stores in.

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One of the most popular sandwich chains in America, Earl of Sandwich, has signed a lease to open a new store in Downtown LA

OMG: Earl of Sandwich Coming to Bunker Hill in Downtown LA

One of the most popular sandwich chains in America is FINALLY planning to open one here in Downtown LA! Ever since I tried Earl of Sandwich for the first time back in 2012 while visiting Walt Disney World in Orlando, Florida, I’ve been a huge fan of their delicious Full Montagu packed with juicy and tender slices of roast beef and turkey on toasted wheat bread. Unfortunately, those Earl-sandwich cravings meant I’d have to drive all the way out to Downtown Disney in Anaheim just to get one (that’s been the only one in the LA metro area so far, although a brand new one just opened at Tom Bradley at LAX).

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Karl Strauss has opened a massive 13,500 SF brewery here in Downtown LA's Financial District

Karl Strauss Brewery Opens Massive LA Flagship in Downtown LA

Wow, time sure does fly. I can’t believe it’s already been a year and half since DTLA Rising first announced that Karl Strauss — the local brewery founded in San Diego in 1989 — was opening its main Los Angeles flagship location here in Downtown LA (there’s another one in Universal City Walk). We’ve all been waiting eagerly for another eatery to activate a once desolate corner in the middle of Downtown LA’s Financial District. Well, the wait is finally over as Karl Strauss is now officially open for beer and foodie lovers alike.

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Opening on Nov 5, the new Arts District Park is much needed green space added to a growing urban community

New Arts District Park Adds More Green Space to Downtown LA

A brand new $1.6 million park is now open in the burgeoning Arts District in Downtown LA. A ribbon-cutting ceremony took place on Saturday, Nov 5, celebrating the exciting grand opening of a much needed outdoor gathering space for a rapidly growing urban community that’s seeing unprecedented growth in both residential and commercial developments. Everywhere you look is something new coming to the next corner. With all that rapid change, there’s no doubt the new Arts District Park will play a significant role in supporting that future growth making the community more livable and inviting.

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Shinola Detroit, known for their watches, bikes, and leather goods, has just opened their largest West Coast flagship store here in Downtown LA's Arts District

Shinola and Salt & Straw Flagship Stores Open in DTLA Arts District

The Arts District in DTLA is really starting to fill in very nicely now, picking up speed as a critical mass is finally beginning to form connecting a sprawling community that stretches from the 101 freeway in the north all the way down to almost the 10 freeway to the south. What was once mostly an industrial warehouse district has been transforming before our very eyes within the last few years into a vibrant urban neighborhood filled with new restaurants, stores, art galleries, and even office space with Warner Brothers and Hyperloop making their headquarters here. Over at 3rd and Garey, two new exciting stores have just recently opened that continue to help attract more people into one of DTLA’s hottest districts. Detroit’s Shinola and Portland’s Salt & Straw Ice Cream are now open for business!

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Replacing the struggling Tossed salad, Jinya Ramen Bar will be serving up authentic Japanese handmade ramen

Jinya Ramen Bar Coming Soon to Downtown LA Financial District

Ramen fans rejoice! Another place to grab a hot yummy bowl of Japanese ramen is coming to the heart of Downtown LA’s Financial District. You might remember almost two years ago, I was super excited that 3rd Generation was the first eatery to bring a good attempt at authentic ramen to the Financial District (check out the slurping good pics here), and now we’re finally gonna get more than just one place to grab ramen here in the FiDi (never hurts to have more options I might add when it comes to variations of food).

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Two new exciting retail spaces are being built out at 801 S Grand that will help continue to activate this burgeoning intersection (Photo: McKently Malak Architects)

New Pedestrian-Friendly Makeover Coming to 801 S Grand in Downtown LA

Lots of activated retail spaces are one of the main keys to unlocking the full potential of any urban setting no matter where you are, and Downtown LA is no exception. If you want Downtown LA to succeed, you gotta have ground floor retail — everywhere. Think about it. Almost any vibrant urban center you visit that’s walkable and vibrant — whether that’s Manhattan, London, Madrid, or Tokyo — is usually filled to the brim with dense back-to-back retail and restaurants on the ground floor (and in Tokyo’s case on the upper and lower levels as well!). So for an ardent urban advocate like myself who yearns for LA to become truly walkable one day, I am constantly looking for signs that Downtown LA is maturing into a serious urban center. That’s why I’m so excited to see that 801 S Grand is adding that critical piece of the urban puzzle with an ongoing retail space expansion project that will transform this corner into a vibrant urban setting.

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The massive $1 billion Oceanwide Plaza will be anchored by the exclusive Park Hyatt hotel, becoming the only "urban Park Hyatt" on the West Coast (for now)

5-Star Park Hyatt Hotel to Anchor Oceanwide Plaza in Downtown LA

Big news comes to South Park this week regarding the massive Oceanwide Plaza project being built across the street from the Staples Center and LA Live complex. The Wall Street Journal released an article this past Monday confirming our initial report that Park Hyatt has been chosen to anchor the $1 billion mixed-user, ousting the still-untested Roberto Cavalli hotel brand that was originally slated to go into the Oceanwide Plaza. DTLA Rising first reported that Park Hyatt was the likely replacement for Cavalli back in Feb 2016.

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The high-end Berlin eyewear brand MyKita has opened its first West Coast store here in Downtown LA at 9th/Broadway

MYKITA Opens First West Coast Store at 9th/Broadway in Downtown LA

Anyone who stands at the corner of 9th and Broadway in Downtown LA can see the writing on the wall. What used to be an intersection devoid of life is now humming with an urban pulse that’s only going to get stronger with time. Not too long ago, the intersection was dominated by check cashing centers and abandoned vacant storefronts. Now a few years later, the scene is quite different with high-end retail businesses anchoring almost all four corners and rippling out into adjacent nearby buildings and intersections including 9th and Main, which is also becoming another hot spot with Verve Coffee serving as the neighborhood’s central gathering place. And things seem to be only looking up as another high-end retailer, this time an exclusive Berlin eyewear brand called MYKITA, has just opened their newest Los Angeles outpost here at 9th and Broadway.

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The new $350 million US Courthouse designed by SOM replaces a 3.6 acre dirt lot with a grand civic structure that helps tie together a disjointed Civic Center

New US Courthouse in Downtown LA Helps Strengthen Civic Center Identity

I can’t believe it’s finally done! And I’m not just talking about the three years it took to finish building the newest — and might I add, very striking — edifice now added proudly to Downtown LA’s expansive Civic Center. Yes, the new shiny and environmentally-friendly US Courthouse is officially complete with the first federal judges planning to move in by early November. But it took a lot longer than three years to get to this point as the federal building was proposed all the way back in 2001. You might remember that this 3.6 acre lot that the new courthouse sits on was once nothing more than an abandoned dirt lot that was not only a huge embarrassing eyesore to Los Angeles’s name but was also a significant reason why the Civic Center was, and still is to a certain degree, severely disjointed (there are other reasons why the Civic Center lacks coherency that you can read about here).

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