Wedbush Center dining area getting $3M renovation as neighbor, Wilshire Grand, nears completion

The Wedbush Center at 1000 Wilshire is about to get some new restaurant space — in a bid, perhaps, to compete with Korean Air’s Wilshire Grand tower nearing completion nearby at 900 Wilshire.

Lincoln Property Company, owner of the 22-story Wedbush building, is planning to convert an existing lobby-level cafe into a 3,000-square-foot restaurant with outdoor seating, according to a project application from the Downtown Los Angeles Neighborhood Council.

The renovations will cost about $3 million, Lincoln property manager Bernard Sichel told The Real Deal. In addition to the restaurant conversion, the Dallas-based company will be making some changes to the ground floor entrances and flooring.

“Right now, we have a nice plaza [outside], but it’s not really utilized by anyone except for a few smokers,” he said. “With the neighborhood changing, we think the restaurant would be a nice addition.”

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A large part of the changes will be the opening of the Wilshire Grand. Once complete, the 73-story hotel complex will be the tallest skyscraper on the West Coast. Slated to open by early 2017, the development will include a 900-room Intercontinental hotel, 45,100 square feet of retail space and 365,100 square feet of office space. The tower will have several restaurants, including a Korean barbecue spot,  TRD previously reported.

Lincoln acquired the Wedbush Center for $132 million in 2012, according to CoStar.

Some of the changes underway could improve things for the Financial Core, which saw a rough second quarter of 2016. The largest DTLA office submarket had a higher vacancy than both the greater Downtown average and the L.A. Metro average. Its asking rent of $3.09 was also lower than the Downtown, Westside and greater L.A. Metro averages.

Lincoln is making big moves in L.A. The company also recently bought a six-building office campus in West L.A. for $135.3 million, TRD reported last month.