Prolific Downtown developer Izek Shomof, who's behind the rehab/revitalizations of properties including the Title Insurance Building and the King Edward Hotel, could be about to deliver a major gamechanger just east in Boyle Heights. A few weeks ago we heard he'd bought the enormous, historic Sears building at Olympic and Boyle with plans for some kind of makeover and it's going to be a very big makeover. (Plans for a redevelopment at the 22-acre site have been popping up and fading away for nearly a decade now, but Shomof seems to have the money and the vision to finally make something happen.) "It sits over 22 acres of land, and the building is 1.8 million square feet, and that by itself is a community by itself; a town by itself," Shomof tells ABC7. He wants to create a complex of stores, lofts, restaurants, and creative space, to remake the campus into a "hub of the community" again (there's still a Sears retail store on the first floor of the building, but nothing else). It would be nice if plans also included new life for the order-fulfillment chutes, which a former employee says are very useful as slides. The project is scheduled to open in just three years.
· Los Angeles Sears building: Owner discusses makeover plan [ABC7]
· Downtown Developer Buys Historic Boyle Heights Sears Building [Curbed LA]