Construction is underway on an $80-million office building in Playa Vista as the Los Angeles neighborhood continues to draw businesses in creative fields.
A team led by San Francisco investor Rockwood Capital is erecting the 190,000-square-foot structure called WE3 that will be the third and final office building in the 6.5-acre Water’s Edge complex at Lincoln and Jefferson boulevards.
Rockwood bought Water’s Edge for $190 million in January from a partnership that included Los Angeles developer Robert Maguire, who built the first two buildings there in 2002 when Playa Vista was a new, unproven office market.
The buildings were at first slow to lease, but are forerunners of the campus-style office parks on the Westside that have grown popular in recent years with firms in technology, entertainment, media and other creative disciplines.
Water’s Edge has an Olympic-sized swimming pool, sand volleyball court and a gym operated by LA Fitness. Tenants include video game company Electronic Arts, ad agency Doner and entertainment company Pop Media Group.
WE3 is being built on what was formerly a parking lot and a soccer field. A new soccer pitch will be created with artificial turf on top of a new parking structure.
As designed by SPF:architects, WE3 will have floor-to-ceiling windows, private balconies and outdoor public meeting spaces including an elevated garden. It is set to open by mid-2020.
Andrew Blanchard, managing director of Rockwood Capital, said Water’s Edge, when it became available, represented “an extremely rare opportunity” to acquire property in the popular Westside office market that included a site approved for additional development.
Average asking rents in Playa Vista were $5.53 per square foot per month in the first quarter, well above the Los Angeles County average of $3.29 a foot, according to real estate brokerage CBRE.
Besides Water’s Edge, there are “virtually no additonal development sites left in Playa Vista,” said broker Jeff Pion of CBRE, who represents the landlord.