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Bids Opened on Parkway Extension

December 24, 1989|RON GALPERIN | Galperin is a Los Angeles-based free-lance writer who has covered the commercial real estate scene for several years

Airport officials finally opened bids this month on a 2-mile extension of Westchester Parkway that could be the site of up to two dozen commercial buildings on 358 acres in Westchester, just north of Los Angeles International Airport.

Tutor-Saliba Corp. turned in the low bid with a $22.3-million proposal to build 5 million square feet of office, industrial and retail space on a site that would stretch Westchester Parkway from Sepulveda Westway to Pershing Drive, near the coast.

This vast site has been little more than a weed garden since the early 1970s, when the Los Angeles Department of Airports bought 2,800 runway-adjacent homes and razed them at a cost of $100 million. The demolition, local residents say, sparked a steep decline in Westchester's once lively business district.

A master plan for LAX Northside by consultants A.C. Martin & Associates received a nod from the Board of Airport Commissioners this spring.

Now the process of choosing a developer for the first several buildings that will be constructed adjacent to the parkway must begin.

In response to community concerns about overdevelopment, the entire project is limited to one-fourth the density otherwise permitted under growth-control measure Proposition U. More than 100 developers have already expressed interest in at least part of the action.

A.C. Martin has proposed a research park of 1.17-million square feet, 750,000 square feet of airport support facilities, two hotels and 130,000 square feet of retail and restaurant space. Remaining parcels would be set aside for office and light-industrial uses. Officials expect completion of the entire project sometime beyond the year 2000.

White & Case Signs World Center Lease

The law firm of White & Case signed a $60-million lease last week for four floors of office space at First Interstate World Center in downtown Los Angeles.

James N. Travers of Travers Realty Corp. represented White & Case in the 15-year lease for 91,668 square feet in the 73-story building.

Developer Maguire Thomas Partners represented itself in lease negotiations, bringing the total space pre-leased in the building to more than 80%.

Attorneys at White & Case plan to relocate from their Security Pacific Plaza offices to 633 West Fifth Street in July, 1990.

L.A. County Leases W. Seventh Offices

The Los Angeles County Transportation Commission has leased 140,399 square feet of office space in the 818 West Seventh Building for $29.6 million.

Ray Lepone, Hans Mumper and Kirby Greenlee of Grubb & Ellis Commercial Real Estate Services represented the tenant. Charlie McPhee of Coldwell Banker Commercial Real Estate Services worked with owner Harry Macklowe Real Estate on the 10-year deal.

New York-based Macklowe has plans to build a hotel just behind the now fully leased building it owns in downtown Los Angeles. Negotiations for development rights needed to begin the project are underway with the city's Community Redevelopment Agency.

Law Firm to Relocate to Downtown Tower

The Law firm of Wilson, Elser, Moskowitz, Edelman & Dicker has signed a $22-million lease for 40,000 square feet of office space at Arco Center, just west of the Harbor Freeway in downtown Los Angeles. The 15-year lease raises to a total of 75% space leased at the nearly new 33-story tower. New York-based Wilson, Elser plans to relocate its local office from 3250 Wilshire Blvd. to 1055 West 7th St. in the spring of 1990.

Randy Plaskoff and Vincent Bologna of Cushman & Wakefield of California's represented the tenant. Owner Transpacific Development Co. was represented by Jerry Eggleston, Tom McDonald, Charlie Charis and Don Palmieri, also of Cushman & Wakefield.

Ambassador Hotel Site Future Still Uncertain

Owners of the Ambassador Hotel in mid-Wilshire are holding talks to persuade the L.A. Unified School District to back off on its plan to take the property through eminent domain and transform it into a new high school.

Wilshire Center Partners--which closed escrow on the site in September--wants to redevelop the 23.5 acre site with a mix of hotel, office, retail and possible residential space. None of that can happen, however, unless the school board finds an alternative site for what it describes as a much-needed mid-city school.

Meanwhile, Wilshire Center Partners--S. D. Malkin Properties Inc. of New York and several United Kingdom companies--has hired New York architecture firm Cooper, Robertson + Partners and Gensler & Associates/Architects of Los Angeles to work up a comprehensive site plan.

Hapsmith Firm to Join in Capital Building

The Hapsmith Co. of Beverly Hills was chosen recently as one of four companies to develop the $665-million Federal Office Building/International Culture and Trade Center in Washington. The complex is slated to include 3.1 million square feet of floor space on an 11-acre site in the Federal Triangle.

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