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Facelift of Union Bank Plaza Continues While Careful to Respect Buildings' History

Los Angeles skyline

Recently, the Union Bank Plaza became the first Downtown Los Angeles skyscraper to earn the designation of Historic-Cultural Monument by the Los Angeles Conservancy, and recent renovations by Swinerton aim to honor its history while modernizing its amenities.

Built in 1967, the Union Bank Plaza is an example of modernist architecture and was the first building completed in the Bunker Hill Urban Renewal Project.

Swinerton, the builders behind the 20 million dollar renovation, seek to carefully upgrade the retail plaza, lobby, outside garden, conference center, add more elevators, bike storage, and electric car charging stations, while keeping the iconic elements of this historic building intact.

“The innovative and progressive design strategies employed here seek to transform Union Bank Plaza, celebrate the history of the space, and enhance the tenant experience through a re-imagination of the amenities and extensive outdoor environments,” the Managing Director Mark Zwagerman of the architecture firm on the project, HLW, said in a news release.

Corner of 5th and Figueroa st.

Getting Ready for a Post-COVID Return to Normal

As coronavirus raged through Los Angeles in the latter half of 2020, essential construction continued and the renovations were able to stay on schedule.

In January, Swinerton completed Phase I. This was marked by interior and exterior renovations, including the conference center and lobby. For Phase II, the two-level retail area has been reimagined and there will be a new outdoor seating area complete with fire pits.

With a completion date for Phase II expected in Spring of 2021, the building will be revamped and ready for a post-COVID return to work.

A view of the garden

The last time the building was renovated was in the 1980s.

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