There have been signs of work going on outside the Little Tokyo Galleria for a bit now and lo and behold, the eighties-riffic mall is getting renovated! Unfortunately, the renovation is not going to make the ugly beige exterior any more inviting, but it will make it more distracting: the Galleria's getting LED screens on both the Alameda side and the Third Street side of the building, reports the Downtown News, as well as some LED lighting, lit-up signage, and "articulated metallic panels" on its exterior. Interior upgrades to air conditioning and plumbing will take place as well. The remodel started in May and the building's external improvements are expected to be complete and unveiled in September. People go to the Galleria because they want delicious Korean barbecue, private-room karaoke, or to bowl while boozing, so they probably won't care either way what the place looks like, but they might be excited to know that the there are new retailers on the way to many of the mall's vacant storefronts too.
The property manager for the Galleria also said that the mall's owners are planning to turn the parking structure on Fourth and Alameda (where many shoppers currently park) into a residential complex with first-floor retail. Construction could start in 2015, he said, though he didn't have any more details. We can only hope it is a dramatic departure from the current mall—perhaps something more in keeping with the plans to turn Little Tokyo into a cultural ecodistrict?
· Little Tokyo Mall to Get Major Upgrades [DN]