The 9900 Wilshire site has changed hands several times, seen a gajillion delays and redesigns on its fancy Richard-Meier-designed condo-and-retail project, and not played nice with the neighbors, but maybe its newest owners will be able to turn the project's rough luck around. Wanda Group, China's biggest commercial developer, has announced that they've purchased the property and are ready to sink $1.2 billion into building a mixed-user on the site, reports the LA Times.
It's not clear whether or not Wanda will be going forward with the previous condo project, though it would be relatively easy to do just that, seeing as the land was listed with entitlements and the lot is already cleared of any trace of the old Robinsons-May building.
Wanda's official release does make clear that they plan to have the new development be a sort of extension of Century City for their company, which also owns the AMC chain of movie theaters, and is really interested in having a stronger presence in the biz in LA. This Bev Hills project will be their "first important step into Hollywood", the headquarters for all the entertainment-related business for the company, and their base for investing in local film companies. (Yes, please!)
How much did all of this cost Wanda? While it wasn't disclosed how much they paid for the site, which hit the market in April,recent estimates put the site's value at somewhere around the mid-$300-million range. In Downtown, similarly enormous investments by Chinese companies have kickstarted other long-dormant projects like Fig Central, which was purchased in late 2013 by Beijing-based Oceanwide Real Estate Group.
· China developer buys Robinsons-May site in Beverly Hills [LAT]
· Wanda Group announces Beverly Hills project [Wanda Group]
· 9900 Wilshire archives [Curbed LA]