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Valley Focus | Woodland Hills

Insurance Holding Firm to Stay in Area

April 10, 1998|SYLVIA L. OLIANDE

Despite the threat a few months ago of 20th Century Industries leaving Warner Center, the company announced Thursday it will stay and expand its base in the area.

The company has signed a lease with developer Tishman International Cos. to remain in the area through 2014 and be 20th Century Plaza's primary tenant.

William G. Crain, vice president of administrative services, said that after a large growth spurt in the late 1980s, the company ran out of room in the Owensmouth Avenue building and chose to relocate five departments elsewhere in Woodland Hills and Canoga Park.

Now, with another expansion planned for three Western states, the insurance holding company is looking to centralize its corporate operations.

The new headquarters for 20th Century is expected to be complete by the end of 1999. When all offices are occupied, the buildings will house about 1,200 employees. The project consists of an 11-story twin to the existing building--creating a total of 500,000 square feet of space--and a multilevel parking structure.

The company, based in Warner Center since 1980, said in February it might move because of a legal battle between the city of Los Angeles and the Los Angeles Unified School District over development.

To the relief of city officials, the school district agreed not to contest any projects already approved, giving 20th Century and other developers the promise of stability they needed to stay.

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