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Construction Begins For $1B The Grand Mixed-Use Project In Downtown Los Angeles

Construction for the much-anticipated $1B The Grand mixed-use development in downtown Los Angeles is finally underway.

Los Angeles city and county officials along with the JV of Related, CORE USA and the Los Angeles Grand Avenue Authority held a ceremonial groundbreaking Monday to kick off construction for the megadevelopment that is being hailed by officials as a game changer in Los Angeles — one that will bring tourists, jobs and people together as a cultural destination.

Rendering of the Frank Gehry-designed The Grand in downtown Los Angeles

“Los Angeles has always been a creative capital, and we see that story told through generations of landmarks — from the LAX Theme Building to Griffith Observatory,” Los Angeles Mayor Eric Garcetti said during the ceremony, according to a news release. “The Grand will build on this tradition as a bold expression of the future. It will bring investment, create jobs, and embody the ingenuity that runs through the heart of our city.”

Formerly The Grand Avenue Project, now known simply as The Grand, the 3-acre mixed-use project is being designed by legendary architect Frank Gehry.

The Grand is a public-private partnership between Related, CORE USA (a joint venture of China Harbour Engineering Co. and CCCG Overseas Real Estate) and the Los Angeles Grand Avenue Authority, a joint powers authority composed of the county of Los Angeles, the city of Los Angeles and the city's former Community Redevelopment Agency.  

City, county and Related officials had wanted to break ground on this project as early as 2007 but the recession followed by other obstacles stalled the megadevelopment.

CORE joined the team in 2017 when it pumped $290M into the venture.

In November, Related announced it had received a $630M construction loan from Deutsche Bank to move forward with the project.

The development is across the street from The Broad Museum and the Walt Disney Concert Hall. It will include 176K SF of retail and restaurant space, a 39-story, 436-unit residential tower, a 430-seat luxury movie theater and a 20-story, 314-key Equinox brand hotel. Twenty percent of the Grand's residential tower will be reserved for affordable housing.

The property will feature plenty of pedestrian-friendly sidewalks and landscaping.

“With The Grand, we’re not just building buildings, we’re building places,” Gehry said. “We are trying to make a place for people not only to live, but also to gather after concerts or performances, and my hope is that it will spawn other growth in the neighborhood."

City and county officials commended the public-private partnership behind the project. Officials believe The Grand will not only bring in more tourists and provide much-needed affordable housing but could generate 10,000 new jobs, $397M in revenue to the city and $68M in revenue to the county over the next 25 years, according to the developers in a news release.

"The Grand is a crescendo to downtown’s cultural renaissance and will bring not only tremendous economic benefits, but culinary creativity, new shopping and entertainment experiences, a unique hotel and brilliant residences for all income levels,” Related Cos. founder and Chairman and Stephen Ross said.

The Grand is expected to open by 2021.