Century City is Reinventing Itself. Here's How.
If you haven't given much thought to Century City lately, it may be time to take another look—new investment, development and leasing activity point to renewed interest as the submarket transforms into a live/work/play environment. That's why we're thrilled to host Bisnow's Future of Century City, Wednesday, June 17, at Century Plaza Towers starting at 8am.
Among our panelists will be Century City Chamber of Commerce CEO Susan Bursk (with her rescue pooch, Solara), who points to tremendous reinvestment in Century City in terms of offices, residential, retail, entertainment, hotels and healthcare (such as Cedars-Sinai and UCLA partnering to turn the former Century City Hospital into the rehab center). By now, the submarket may be more than half a century old, but it's completing its vision as a full-service city within a city. And if all goes as hoped, soon it'll have one of the few missing links: a subway stop.
The station, proposed at Avenue of the Stars and Constellation Boulevard, will bring passengers into the heart of Century City. In addition, the neighborhood's second public art exhibition, organized by the Chamber's Arts Council and the Century City Arts & Culture Foundation, was installed in March, increasing the area's cultural amenities. Twenty abstract sculptures by 10 nationally and internationally renowned artists are sprinkled throughout Century City's public and private properties.
Another panelist will be Watt Cos president Nadine Watt, who tells us there's been a spate of lease signings at the company's twin 23-story Watt Plaza. The new leases, which bring occupancy in the towers to 82%, include traditional tenants such as law firms, but also entertainment and other more creative-type companies. An additional 15k SF of leases are in process. In Century City as a whole, occupancies and rental rates are rising, she says. Here's Nadine with husband Andrew Jameson and daughters Reese and Keira.
At the end of last year, one of Watt Plaza's largest tenants, which had been in the building since construction, consolidated and moved Downtown. The property now has three contiguous floors totaling close to 60k SF available. Nadine tells us the company is building out some spec suites that offer a creative edge—a hybrid creative space in a more traditional building, she says, with raised ceilings, concrete floors, more glass and light. As one gets leased, another is built out, so there's always one that's move-in ready. Watt Plaza VP of leasing Kathy McKay says 40k SF have been built or are under construction, comprising nine tenants, with an additional 20k SF planned.
Watt Plaza is participating in the public art exhibition; two sculptures have been placed at the gateway to the project, including David Buckingham's Big X (seen being installed) and Bret Price’s Ball of Chain. The exhibition is curated by Carl Schlosberg, chair of the sculpture committee of the Chamber's Arts Council. Outside of Century City, the Watt Cos owns a medical office building at Third and Alvarado near DTLA, where it recently executed a 39k SF lease with Children's Hospital Los Angeles, and is selling 15 high-end condos at a mixed-use retail project in Park City, UT. Hear more at our Future of Century City, Wednesday, June 17, at Century Plaza Towers starting at 8am. Sign up here.