Indian Granite Suits Upscale Locale
August 1, 2009
Even in a depressed economy, prime real estate commands a premium for developers, who need to create commercial facilities that can be leased at a price that reflects the status of the neighborhood. Such was the case for the new Wilshire Le Doux Medical Building in Beverly Hills, CA, and this goal was achieved through the use of unique glasswork and polished granite from India for the exterior.
Named for its location at the corner of Wilshire Boulevard and Le Doux Road in Beverly Hills, the Wilshire Le Doux Medical Building was developed by GK Development Co. of Beverly Hills. The facility is not only in a prestigious neighborhood, but also one that offers practical advantages, as it is located near Cedars Sinai Hospital.
In conceiving a design for the project, GK Development sought to create a “Class A” facility, and the building includes 14,000 square feet of medical space as well as 6,000 square feet of retail property.
The exterior of the building has a modern, contemporary aesthetic, and the primary building materials are glass and Coast Green granite from India. The material was supplied by Southland Stone USA of North Hollywood, CA, which reports that the project utilized 12,000 square feet of cut-to-size granite in a 3-cm format.
The granite was installed by Certified Tile & Marble of Van Nuys, CA. According to Shay Yakobi of Certified Tile & Marble, the majority of the granite panels that were installed on the exterior had a size of 4 x 4 feet, and they were mechanically anchored to the backup wall. “The whole job was a mechanical installation,” he said. “We went through engineering and plan approval, and then we used just mechanical channels.”
Certified Tile & Marble had approximately 30 people working on the project, and they were on site for two months. “They wanted a modern, contemporary medical center,” Yakobi said. “The stone is integrated with the glass in the front of the building and all the way around.”
Yakobi explained that the stone installers had to work in sequence with the other contractors on the project, particularly because of the combination of materials used. “We had to coordinate with the other trades - especially the concrete and the glass,” he said. “It had to be a very accurate job. Basically, everything came cut to size, but we did some adjustments in the field.”
In discussing challenges on the project, Yakobi said that the building’s overall height - as well as the weight of the individual panels - had to be accounted for during the installation. “We had to work at a height of 65 feet above ground in some places, which can be difficult,” he said. “The pieces weighed more than 300 pounds each, so we used a crane to lift the pieces onto the roof. Then we would lower them into place.”
The project was completed in February of this year, and the facility has been deemed a success, as it is commanding some of the highest rents in the neighborhood. “Everybody has been very happy with the installation,” Yakobi said.