Talks to open up more of the Japanese real estate market to U.S. real estate firms may be at a standstill, but an architectural firm, Albert C. Martin & Associates is forging ahead.
The company has opened a satellite office in Tokyo, stating that it is the first Los Angeles-based architecture/engineering outfit to do so. The 82-year-old company, which designed Los Angeles City Hall and the Department of Water and Power Building, is already preparing a master plan for a large mixed-use development near Hiroshima.
Martin isn't taking on the Japanese by itself: The new Tokyo office is jointly managed by Isuku Inter Co. Ltd., a Japanese consulting company.
If things go well, Martin will be busy on both sides of the Pacific Ocean. The firm is already working with several Japanese development companies in Los Angeles, including Mitsui Fudosan (U.S.A.).
Mitsui chose Martin over several other firms to design a 52-story, $200-million office tower under construction on the corner of Figueroa Street and Wilshire Boulevard downtown--downtown Los Angeles , that is.