"Basically what this was, was a big dirt pit for almost 20 years," said LA City Councilman Herb Wesson. "And the community came together in determining what they wanted."
The Midtown Crossing, which was made possible by the Community Redevelopment Agency, features stores like Starbucks, Panda Express and Lowe's, and is expected to serve roughly 1.3 million residents who live within a 5-mile radius.
Incorporation of the Metro transit bus center also ensures plenty of foot traffic, but the hope is that the news stores will help revitalize the area while giving the local economy a boost.
"Eight-hundred-fifty people that maybe didn't have a job a few months ago have a job," Wesson said. "They can feed their families."
However, not all residents were so quick to celebrate.
"The jobs are great," said resident Tom Henry. "If that's the upside to it, that's wonderful. But there's a lot of downside to it too. And the traffic is a nightmare."
Wesson acknowledged the problem but isn't promising any fixes.
"In order to get, you have to give, and I think the get is bigger than our give," Wesson said.
There still are a few vacant spots that need tenants, but overall the project has been hailed as a huge success.