Construction is expected to begin next month for a mixed-use project that will rehabilitate the former home of Dearden’s in Downtown Los Angeles into retail and office space

The property, composed of three buildings at the intersection of 7th and Main Streets, will be converted into 140,000 square feet of offices with ground floor shops and restaurants as part of a development from Urban Offerings in partnership with ESI Ventures.

Due to the continuous tenancy and diverse range of businesses run by Dearden’s, the building has undergone significant alterations in its more than 100-year life span.  According to Marc Cucco, Vice President of Development at Urban Offerings, the scope of work for the project is largely focused on “removing many of the piecemeal alterations and celebrating the return of the early 20th century material palette: brick walls, timber framing and cast-iron columns.”  

The building is unique amongst Downtown properties due to its heavy timber construction, rather than the steel- and concrete-framed buildings more commonly seen during the early 20th century.  This will allow for the building's offices to have a warmer look and feel compared to spaces in buildings of a similar vintage, according to Cucco.

Downtown-based architecture firm Omgivning is designing the restoration project, which is converting the building's upper floors to office space and adding 20,000 square feet of ground-floor shops and restaurants.  In addition, the eevelopment will transform a 4,000-square-foot rear yard into a landscaped, outdoor green space for tenants and guests.

The project, which is to be built over a period of approximately 12 months, is the second phase of an office campus which could eventually span much of a full city block.  Just south at 755 S. Los Angeles Street, Urban Offerings and ESI are already at work on the Norton Building, which is being rehabilitated as approximately 65,000 square feet of office space with a ground floor market hall and the new construction of a rooftop restaurant.

Urban Offerings is also partnering on a handful of high-rise developments in the Los Angeles area, including a proposed 33-story building just two blocks east of Deardens at 7th and Maple Streets.