Wednesday, March 12, 2008

The Wilshire Corridor From Back In the Day Makes a Comeback

Wilshire Boulevard, Downtown Los Angeles - 1930s (?)

Another axis of great development activity in Los Angeles is along storied Wilshire Boulevard from Downtown through Miracle Mile, reports the Los Angeles Times. Up until the late 1980's, this area along Wilshire was a major business center, populated by companies such as Union Bank, Texaco, IBM and Getty Oil. But following the recession of the early '90s and the riots of 1992, the area fell into decline.

But "the other Wilshire Corridor" is back in full force, with thousands of residential units under construction or in the planning phase, and new high-rise towers breaking ground. The area is exempt from a city law passed in 1986 intended to curb the development of high-rise towers, and is coming to epitomize the vision of LA as a city where people live, work and shop within their own neighborhood -- and perhaps even rely on public transporation. The network of local bus, subway and rail connections is excellent. The area also has the city's -- and perhaps the nation's -- best stock of vintage Deco buildings that a ripe for improvement.

Part of resurgence in the area has been led by Korean American and Korean investment. South Korea recently raised the amount of capital that can be taken from the country, contributing to the flow of funds into the area. Upscale towers are rising at Wilshire and Western and nearby areas to accommodate buyers who want all the city's necessities at easy access.