Valued at over $1 billion, the Wilshire Grand Center celebrated its grand opening today at Wilshire Boulevard and Figueroa Street in downtown L.A. The day of celebrations included a ribbon cutting and cornerstone signing ceremony featuring featured comments from city and state elected officials as well as Yang Ho Cho, Chairman and CEO of Korean Air. Also commenting were Chris Martin, Chairman and CEO of the center’s designers and developers, A.C. Martin; Elie Maalouf, CEO of The Americas InterContinental Hotels Group, and Peter Davoren, Turner Construction President and CEO.
The celebration concluded with a nighttime light show -- accompanied by music -- presenting a dazzling spectacle of the building’s signature 73-story-high LED lighting as it illuminated the skyline of downtown Los Angeles.
The grand opening is a significant occasion for the city and for the project that began construction with a record-breaking concrete mat pour in February 2014. Over the past five years, 11,500 workers spent 5,433,012 hours constructing the skyscraper that features Los Angeles’s first sky lobby, a sky deck, innovative outdoor spaces, exterior plazas and light features that will redefine the skyline and living experience of downtown Los Angeles for generations to come.
“This is the culmination of a dream and the completion of a promise. I have long dreamed of reinvesting in Los Angeles, my second home. We promised a world-class project and we delivered the crown jewel of Figueroa Street. This is a proud moment,” said Chairman Cho.
“The Wilshire Grand is designed as a tribute to, and for, the city of Los Angeles,” said Chris Martin, CEO and President of A.C. Martin, the firm responsible for the building’s design. “Seeing this project come to fruition is a momentous occasion and symbol of pride for the entire city, and for all those who work, live and stay in Los Angeles.”
The Wilshire Grand Center is an eco-friendly building that is built with state-of-the-art construction methods. It’s designed to withstand a magnitude 8 earthquake by using the Bucking Restrained Braces (BRB) method that is especially important in a region affected by Pacific Rim earthquakes. It also was designed as an environmentally-friendly building to meet the "Green California" guidelines set forth by the state government. As a result, the building reflects the philosophy of an environmentally-conscious hotel and was acknowledged for its efforts by receiving a LEED (Leadership in Energy and Environmental Design) certification from the American Green Building Council, a private environmental organization in the United States.