Blogdowntown.com publisher Eric Richardson saw the view from the 26th and 45th floors of the Ritz-Carlton tower now under construction at AEG's L.A. Live complex because his name was drawn as one of a dozen winners from just over 100 people attending a ground floor tour of the L.A. Live Tower. The luck of the draw saved him “from having to try to beg my way aboard” an elevator.
He and others wearing hard hats joined the trade group American Institute of Steel Construction to give their nod of approval for the building's steel-plate sheer walls, which seismically protect the skyscraper. The walls allowed a 30 percent decrease in the building's weight and helped the project’s timeline shave off several months.
The use of steel also added real estate in the sky that, according to AEG, will be completed as a 54-story tower, with the Ritz-Carlton residences beginning at the 27th floor.
By using steel instead of concrete, the thickness needed for walls was reduced. That created an extra 20,000 square feet, leaving the chance to sell an estimated extra $20 million in floor space. In addition, without having to wait for poured concrete to set, time and manpower were saved during construction.
Sixty percent of the units have been sold, and the tower has reached 46 stories and the top-off is expected in December. For developers, the top-off has become as important a ceremony as groundbreaking ceremony.