Downtown Los Angeles is the city’s central business district, and home to more than a half-million jobs. The diverse area includes the Fashion and Financial District, and although this area had a significant economic decline in the decades leading up to the early 2000’s, the city has experienced a significant turnaround.
The strategic urban planning that has gone into Downtown Los Angeles has created a modern mix of functional and artistic to ensure the protection of the city’s diverse cultural charm.
Because of the rediscovery of architectural gems and ideally priced sections of land, there was a boom of interest from smart developers around 2014. Because of the central location and asking rents below the metro average, Downtown still attracts technology companies, co-working startups, hardware, and cleantech companies. Downtown LA is also popular among up-and-coming artist, due to its vibrant cultural scene.
Larger companies that hold commercial real estate in Downtown L.A. include Anschutz Entertainment Group, BYD Company, and Cathay Bank. There are also plans in place to continue the refinement of the central business district through the renovation of areas like Skid Row, and incentives for the growth of the Financial District and Fashion District.
Downtown LA is filled with fantastic art museums such as The Broad and the Museum of Contemporary Art. This neighborhood also entertains visitors and new residents at venues such as the Grammy Museum, The Staples Center, and the Walt Disney Concert Hall, and will be sure to turn heads as the host of the 2028 Summer Olympics.
Downtown Los Angeles Office Space│Lease Data & Trends
|Office Space for Lease In||Class A (per month)||Class B (per month)||Vacancy|
With more than 30 million square feet of commercial real estate inventory, business in Downtown L.A. is on the rise. The average asking rent in this neighborhood is approximately $42 per square foot ($3.50 per square foot per month).
Class A office space typically leases for more than $43 per square foot ($3.60 per square foot per month), while Class B office space for lease can be secured for an average of around $37 per square foot ($3.10 per square foot per month).
Downtown LA Market Sentiment
Q4 2018: New leasing activity has been driven by businesses in the coworking, entertainment, new media and education sectors. Despite the 2018 citywide vacancy rate increasing nearly 15% from 2016, asking rents have continued to rise, and are up nearly 10% year-over-year.
Los Angeles is at the heart of the entertainment industry, and as technology, content, and entertainment become further entwined, the mix of businesses and major players in the LA economy will continue to evolve.
Q2 2018: The unemployment rate in Los Angeles County has decreased by 0.4% and has inspired economic growth through the creation of 63,900 jobs. This growth has been reflected in increased leasing activity, with year-to-date net absorption up 225,000 square feet.
What Our Brokers Say About Downtown LA Office Space
Downtown LA is growing due to tech companies and financial institutions seeking reasonably priced commercial real estate in order to devote more capital towards nurturing their business.
Downtown is surrounded by some of the country’s top rated universities, such as the University of California Los Angeles (UCLA) and the University of Southern California (USC), making it a great area to recruit young talent for both internships and entry-level positions.
Several game studios and entertainment industry moguls, such as Universal, have found Downtown Los Angeles to be a launching pad for communication that extends beyond Silicon Beach. There is also a significant presence of legal services Downtown, with the DTLA Federal Courthouse and the United States Courthouse steps from one another.
Getting to, From, and Around Downtown Los Angeles
Los Angeles is at its heart a driving city, and as a result competes with New York City for the title of worst traffic in America. Traffic data firm INRIX reported LA is home to nearly 40% of the roadways most likely to face debilitating slowdowns. By 2026, traffic is estimated to cost the city more than $90 billion in lost time, gas, and carbon emissions.
The Los Angeles Metro Rail System runs several lines throughout the city, and the Metro Rapid bus lines have signal priority and make limited stops to make any commuter’s journey just a bit easier. The Los Angeles Department of Transportation operates seven local DASH shuttle lines on weekdays. Amtrak and Greyhound are excellent options for intercity travel in Los Angeles County.
Part of the urban revitalization project is to continue the building connectivity of the city itself, which means filling city blocks with businesses that welcome pedestrians and streamlining public transit. Although there are dreams of building a “Subway to Sea” rail line, the city’s efforts are focused on transit expansion Regional Connector Transit Corridor (began September 2014) and the development of street-car trolley service.
While the Transit score for Downtown Los Angeles is an impressive 98, this neighborhood is known for being the city’s most walkable neighborhood with a Walk Score of 95. There is a handful of public parks, gardens, breweries, eclectic restaurants, and cafes sprinkled throughout downtown, making this area hard to resist for businesses focused on company culture.
Downtown Los Angeles Neighborhood & History
Tongva Native Americans are the earliest known population to live in the area that is now considered Downtown Los Angeles, until the European settlement in the late 1760s. From the early 1880s to 1896 the population went from 11,000 to an enormous 100,000 people.
Downtown experience its Golden Age in the 1920s when the city’s rail lines became the most impressive in the world. Because of this, there was a massive influx of residents, and the city was nicknamed the “Wall Street of the West” as a close rival to New York City.
Following World War II, investment in the city saw a sharp decline as many corporate headquarters spread to the suburbs. By the 1930s, Bunker Hill, once one of the neighborhood’s most wealthy areas, became a mecca for low-income housing. Historic buildings were demolished, and Downtown Los Angeles became a drive-in-drive-out destination. In Bunker Hill Class A office Space was being abandoned leaving the remaining financial corporations to move into newer buildings.
The neighborhood’s overwhelming revival came in the late 1990s, and by 2013 DTLA was being considered a hip, well populated, and flourishing area again. Larger corporations still find themselves west of Bunker Hill in the Financial District, while young innovators are filling the historic buildings left behind by the shift.
Downtown is continually seeing new life and investment, making it a great place to grow a business.