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Coffee Bean & Tea Leaf Brews Plan for New Los Angeles Headquarters

Two Building Complex Could Give Baldwin Hills a Boost
October 8, 2018
Rendering of Coffee Bean & Tea Leaf's  proposed corporate headquarters in Baldwin Hills.
Rendering of Coffee Bean & Tea Leaf's proposed corporate headquarters in Baldwin Hills.
The Coffee Bean & Tea Leaf, a coffee and tea retail chain and distributor, plans to build a headquarters in Los Angeles' Baldwin Hills neighborhood that would allow the firm to relocate its corporate office from the city's Miracle Mile area, where it moved only three years ago.

Plans for the new home of the coffee and tea chain, which has grown into one of the largest privately owned, family-run coffee and tea companies in the world, include constructing two buildings totaling 218,778 square feet on a 3.6-acre vacant lot at 6034 W. Jefferson Blvd. that the company owns, according to the Los Angeles Department of City Planning.

The proposed project, which requires a zoning change to allow for the three-story and a six-story building, includes 90,054 square feet of space for the corporate office, up to 50,775 square feet of warehouse space, a drive-thru, a viewing area and up to 53,762 square feet of coffee bean roasting space as well as 2,200 square feet for retail, city documents show. It was designed by Beverly Hills architecture firm Jack Hollander & Associates.

The plans were first reported by Urbanize LA.

Coffee Bean & Tea Leaf began 55 years ago with the opening of the first store in Brentwood and now operates more than 1,000 locations. Since its founding, it has moved its headquarters to locations including Beverly Hills and, most recently, the Miracle Mile museum district where it moved into about 12,000 square feet at the Wilshire Courtyard, a 1 million-square-foot office complex owned by Tishman Speyer, in 2015.

The exit could be a blow for the two-building project that is reportedly on the market for sale and already struggles with a vacancy rate of about 60 percent following the departure of E! Entertainment.

The new headquarters, which is expected to take almost three years to complete, would be within walking distance of the Metro Expo light-rail line, which runs from Santa Monica to downtown Los Angeles.

"It’s a good strategic move, putting themselves near the (Metro) Expo line," Odest Riley Jr., president of Inglewood-based WLM Financial and a real estate broker, said of the proposed project.

Los Angeles City Council President Herb Wesson said it will be good for the local economy.

"The Coffee Bean and Tea Leaf is a company founded and grown in Los Angeles," Wesson said in an email. "Their new headquarters will both create economic opportunities in the surrounding community and serve as a reminder to our local entrepreneurs that anything is possible."

The Department of City Planning reports construction could begin in January.

Karen Jordan, Los Angeles Market Reporter  CoStar Group   
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