Cohen broke ground last year on the Red Building, a class Aoffice project that will join the Blue and Green buildings at the14-acre Pacific Design Center site at 8687 Melrose Ave. Thedevelopment of the Red Building, which is scheduled to be completedin 2010, will create up to 1,933 new construction-related unionjobs.

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The deal with the trade unions is the latest in a series ofsteps that Cohen has implemented to expand and upgrade the PacificDesign Center since acquiring it. A $45-million repositioning andrenovation program at the design center, for example, has targetedprestigious high-end interior design showrooms that once occupiedthe center but had left for storefront locations elsewhere.

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Cohen's program attracted tens of thousands of square feet ofnew tenants, bringing the occupancy to more than 90% at the750,000-sf Center Blue building at the design center. The Bluebuilding, known locvally as the Blue Whale, opened in 1975 as thefirst of three buildings to be developed at the West Hollywoodproject. The Blue building was once filled with showrooms, butoccupancy declined in the 1990s before Cohen acquired the property.The $45-million repositioning budget at the design center also wenttoward renovations at the 450,000-sf Center Green building, whichdebuted in 1988. The Center Green building is home to officetenants as well as design firms.

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Cohen says that construction of the Red Building "will be a keyeconomic engine for creating good jobs in construction and relatedoccupations in West Hollywood." He cites an economic study saysthat the project is expected to supply 2,691 permanent new jobs inthe West Hollywood community, $305 million in total annual economicoutput and an additional $735,000 annually to the City of WestHollywood budget in new taxes.

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All three of the buildings at Pacific Design Center have beendesigned by architect Cesar Pelli of Pelli Clarke Pelli. Othersinvolved in the design of the Red Building include executivearchitect Gruen Associates, interior architect AREA Design Inc.,landscape architect Thomas Balsley Associates, mechanical engineerTsuchiyama Kaino Sun & Carter and structural engineersEnglekirk Partners Consulting.

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The design center features more than 130 showrooms selling morethan 2,200 interior product lines to design professionals. The PDCcampus also features the Museum of Contemporary Art, tworestaurants operated by chef and restaurateur Wolfgang Puck, aconference center and the the SilverScreen Theater film venue andreception facility.

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