Bunker Hill is really starting to come together! You can actually feel how much more vibrant it is now than ever before. Ever since the popular Broad Museum opened here in 2015 (full tour inside), I often see crowds of people wandering Grand Ave even during the weekends, which was unheard of before. Even more exciting is how many huge projects are under construction right now that will transform this once sterile corporate address into a vibrant mixed-use destination on par with other lively districts in DTLA. With the highly anticipated Grand Avenue Project in full swing now (it broke ground earlier this year in Feb), California Plaza getting an extensive makeover, and the soon-to-open Halo project at the Wells Fargo Center, things are about to get, hot.
Last week, I went on a hard hat tour of the Brookfield Properties-owned Halo project led by Director for Mixed-Use of Brookfield Properties retail group, Rachael Zanetos. Brookfield Properties, the largest commercial landlord in DTLA, is investing $60 million into the Halo makeover project, once a fortress-like food court located within the 2.6 million square foot Wells Fargo Center defined mostly by the two SOM-designed angular granite towers. Walking the construction site, I could see how much has been reconfigured within the cavernous space — topped with a soaring glass atrium — that will become more open and airy compared to its former dark and compartmentalized iteration.
“We want people to be able to see allllllll the way into the back of this place when they first come in,” Zanetos told me as we walked the space.
Given how unfinished it is right now, it might be hard to imagine how it’ll all come together. But it’s not hard to see how the Halo project will become an integral part of Bunker Hill’s successful revitalization. I loved seeing all the walls being taken out around the perimeter of the Wells Fargo Center, replaced with lush landscaping and more seating. The result will be more transparency, softer edges, and ultimately, a property that is more attractive and inviting to the public. A smart direction to move toward as Downtown LA continues to embrace urbanism and prioritizing the pedestrian experience.
Zanetos was excited to share the first wave of eateries coming to Halo that will turn this place into a destination, not only for office workers on the Hill, but pretty much anyone in LA who wants to experience good food in a sophisticated urban setting.
“Yes, there will be parking!” Zanetos emphasized. “We haven’t come up with the exact pricing structure yet, but it’ll be similar to our other Brookfield property FIGat7th.”
So without further ado, here is the first wave of tenants that will be opening at Halo with a second round of eateries to be announced in early 2020:
Oh, and one more thing. One of the first things that I asked about on the hard hat tour was the beautiful Robert Graham statues that used to adorn the food court garden. Zanetos reassured me they are being taken care of properly and will be reintroduced into a special garden next to the Nick + Stef’s Steakhouse just outside Halo.