It may look a bit rough round the edges now, but in one year the 700 block of South Alameda Street in downtown Los Angeles will be transformed into a high-end restaurant and boutique shopping mecca.
First known as the LA Terminal Market, the 30-acre plot that Row DTLA now occupies was once the site of the former Southern Pacific Railroad HQ, a major hub for the distribution of produce across the region from 1917 to 1923.
In June it debuted the Brooklyn export Smorgasburg food and flea market, held Sundays on what still operates as a produce market during the rest of the week.
Eventually, Row DTLA will be a place where people can park their car in a mammoth 4,000-space parking lot - the biggest in Los Angeles County, no less - and shop at retailers that are less familiar to the West Coast crowd.
Right now, the downtown behemoth is kicking off the holiday season by hosting a bricks and mortar shopping pop-up for twelve outfits that are already killing it online. They include snazzy Swedish watch brand Daniel Wellington, purveyors of minimalistic time pieces with interchangeable straps, New York luggage line Away Travel and This Is Ground, producers of premium leather kits that are proudly “designed in LA, made in Italy”, with a focus on utility and usability.
With the soon-to-open hipster hotel Nomad at Seventh and Olive streets, downtown Los Angeles’ cultural renaissance continues apace, providing an irresistible laboratory for brands that cater to the culturally attuned.