Wednesday, April 16, 2014

Shiny New Renderings of the City Market Mega-Development

Take a look at the latest renderings for City Market, the Fashion District mega-development which proposes to transform a century-old produce market into a 10-acre mixed-use campus.  Comprised of 14 development sites roughly bounded by 9th, 12th, San Julian and San Pedro Streets, City Market would create more than 1.9 million square feet of programmed space.  Designed by HansonLA, plans call for 945 units of new housing, a 210-room business class hotel, and 225,000 square feet of ground level retail and restaurant space.  On the southern end of the project site, ground-up construction and the adaptive re-use of existing buildings would create nearly 300,000 square feet of office space.  Known as "City Market South," this segment of the development would be a "symbiotic mixture of creative office, unique food and beverage, and destination retail."  Renderings from HansonLA portray a cluster of re-purposed warehouse buildings centered around a pedestrian friendly central courtyard (see below).  The northern end of the project site would feature a mid-rise urban campus for one or more creative arts colleges, providing space for over 1,400 students.

Buildings would range from 3 to 38 stories in height, with the largest tower peaking at 435 feet above ground level.  This height limit is marketed as a nod towards Los Angeles' iconic City Hall.  Office and residential structures would sit above approximately 3,700 parking spaces, located in podium structures and underground garage space.  City Market would feature ample green space on its first and second levels, serving both tenants and residents in the surrounding neighborhood.  Designed by Olin Landscape Architecture, the project includes linear park dubbed the "Runway," which would traverse the San Julian Street side of the property.

Of course, don't expect to see shovels hit the dirt for most of City Market for several years.  Work may start in the near future on a small adaptive re-use section of the project, but the complete buildout may take two decades to become reality.  Of course, with a project valued between $500 million and $1 billion, a long development timeline is to be expected.  When it's all said and done, City Market could bring thousands of jobs and new residents to a still developing part of the Downtown neighborhood.  More importantly, it could be a catalyst for new investment in the Fashion District, much like Staples Center was in South Park.

City Market's location within Downtown.  All images from City Market, unless specified otherwise.

San Julian Street profile.

Site plan for the project.  Two parcels on the west side of San Julian Street are also included in the project, intended for apartments and a hotel.

Bird's eye view of the project, including Runway's bridge over 11th Street.

Looking north along San Julian Street.

The higher education campus at the northern end of the project site.

City Market South.  Image credit: HansonLA.


  1. well, damn! This was unexpected news. I can definitely see the area between Staples and this project filled with dozens of highrises in the next 2 decades. With Urban Mack, Herald Examiner lot and all the other proposals, This might be a great idea by these guys even though its in the middle of nowhere right now

    1. There does seem to be a lot of momentum going east from South Park along Pico, Olympic, 9th, 11th, etc. City Market could extend that redevelopment all the way into the Fashion District.

  2. Definitely an interesting/exciting project, but it's sad to see hardly any effort made at adaptive reuse of the old produce market... the older images seemed to show more reuse. With such an interesting inherent history and form this project could be much more than what seems to be planned...

    1. I wouldn't get too worked up over these conceptual renderings. They don't represent concrete plans, but rather serve as a guide for land use/scale. Since City Market will most likely be developed piecemeal, it's hard to say what the project will look like in reality.

    2. That is likely true, but (and I may be mistaken) I seem to remember that they already demo'd a significant portion of the historic market, which would certainly diminish the amount of existing structure that could be adaptively reused.