Observation Deck Headed for LA's Tallest Tower | NBC Southern California

Observation Deck Headed for LA's Tallest Tower

The U.S. Bank Tower is getting a tourist-ready re-do.

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    Will visitors soon be heading to the top of the U.S. Bank Tower? Overseas Union Enterprise Ltd. have designs on a new restaurant and deck for the skyscraper. (Photo by David McNew/Getty Images)

    The U.S. Bank Tower has gained a notable amount of fame for a variety of disparate appearances and roles.

    Runners races up its 1,679 steps each fall to raise funds for the Ketchum-Downtown YMCA. Beloved television host Huell Howser gave viewers a peek at what the very top of the fabled "Tallest Building in the West" looked like. And "Independence Day," yeah, we all know the scene of eager, sign-waving people wanting to jump a ride on a spaceship out of town.

    But the tower at 633 W. Fifth Street may hold a new place in the minds and hearts of locals and visitors: tourist destination.

    The LA Times writes that Overseas Union Enterprise Ltd., a hotel and real estate firm out of Singapore, would like to make it a "busy tourist attraction like the Empire State Building in New York and the Willis Tower in Chicago."

    Both of those structures exceed the U.S. Bank Tower in height by a couple of dozen stories. The 72-story building, which was built in the late '80s and finished in 1989, is still called the Library Tower by many an Angeleno.

    A restaurant is planned for the 71st floor, with an observation deck on the 69th story. Bloomberg reports that renovations are in the works for the tower, which was purchased by OUE in 2014 for $367.5 million.

    Like other buildings of its stature with observation decks, there'd be a fee to visit the deck.

    The question for every SoCaler will ultimately be this: Can you see your house from there? Give that the tower, which is typically lit in multi-hue form at its crown for the holidays, can be seen from the Inland Empire in the right weather, and just about every hilltop in the region, the answer could very well be "yes."

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