Topa Management Company Receives "Green" Business Award
The Hawaii Department of Business Economic Development and Tourism, the Hawaii Department of Health, and the Chamber of Commerce of Hawaii recognized Topa Management Company for their part in protecting Hawaii's pristine 'aina and demonstrating environmental responsibility by committing to conserving water, energy, and other resources.
In a commendation ceremony held at the Office of the Governor on April 27, 2010, Lt. Gov. James R. "Duke" Aiona extended a warm mahalo to Topa Management Company for taking the initiative to employ responsible conservation measures and for contributing to a cleaner, better environment for Hawaii. Enacting green practices is both the right and profitable thing to do. Tenants will soon be asked to help make Topa Financial Center a "Green" building.
By: Jason Mandl
To impart new life or vigor. To bring again into activity and prominence. Revitalization. This is what Westwood Village is uniquely positioned to receive at this very moment.
As the word implies, Westwood Village was once a thriving cultural epicenter in a city known for its sprawl and microcosms. One of the few places in Los Angeles, where it is even remotely reasonable to ditch the car and walk. And as such, in typical human fashion, everyone wanted a piece of a good thing.
John Wolfskill saw the potential when he purchased the then ”Rancho San Jose de Buenos Ayres” in 1884 for ten dollars an acre for farming. Then the University of California bought in at $1.32 Million for 375 acres. In the early 1920s, The Janss Investment Corp. announced they would develop “one of the most unusual business districts in the United States.” Electing a Mediterranean architectural theme, Westwood Village was born. In came the church, the bank, the University, diverse restaurants, shops, and ultimately the world renowned Geffen Playhouse Theatre. The Village was vitalized and things were well.
But we are talking about revitalization, right? So what happened to this European-themed, walking microvillage as the big city grew? Well somewhere along the way, the vision for Westwood Village got clouded. The Village endured a string of youth-driven acts of violence. Foot traffic was rapidly outpaced by vehicular traffic. Character-based local businesses had to compete with the marketing dollars of large corporate chains. And even the local community became divided into factions who spent more time infighting than focusing on the task they were all charted to protect…the integrity and best interest of the Village itself.
But again, back to the good news. Revitalization. The Village has seen the ebbs and flows any significant community can expect, and is poised to make some changes and enjoy a massive resurgence. The question now is only this: who will be along for the ride? The LAPD has reported several years of decreased crime and vandalism, landowners are rebuilding properties and taking the opportunity to re-outfit their previous tenants the likes of McDonalds, in favor of sidewalk cafes. The UCLA students are using The Village in fewer numbers than before, opening the doors back to the surrounding adults. A return to the roots? A Renaissance revival of sorts?
And what could be better than a bunch of visionaries targeting the revitalization of a community where a single-family residence costs more than the entire city did a century ago? Clearly, a bunch of visionaries backed by developers with hundreds of millions of dollars in capital to execute on that vision. Developers like the Alan Kasden, Kam Heckmat and the Topa Management Company fit this description, and are committed to bringing the revitalization of The Westwood Village to bear.
It is time to refocus the attention back to the adults. A classy hotel, a few new restaurants, a world class art gallery, abundant parking and a return to the pleasantries of the European marketplace on which it was founded, and Westwood Village will be competing with the Old Towns, Melrose and Montana Avenues, Main Streets and Robertson Boulevards that have stolen away the foot traffic that more regularly frequented the businesses here. There are only a handful of places in Los Angeles that can offer this potential to new business, residents, and visitors alike. And even fewer with reasonable rents.
Though not quite as ripe as getting in on ”Rancho San Jose de Buenos Ayres” for ten dollars an acre, Westwood Village presents a truly unique opportunity to get involved in a project that is slated for major change and development without looking to the suburbs to try and guess just how far we can develop (or sprawl) the “Greater Los Angeles Area.”
Get involved. Revitalize Westwood Village! June 28, 2007
By: Barbara Kinard
John Anderson and Topa Management Company brought together a group of investors to purchase the Brentwood Country Mart in 1972, from its original owner Lewis Semtei. What impressed them most about the community of Brentwood was that it did not feel like a “concrete jungle”. Having spent his youth in the Midwest, the down-home style and neighborliness Mr. Anderson experiences when he visits Brentwood makes him feel like he has found a little piece of home. Few other properties capture that sense of easy living like the Brentwood Country Mart. View the Article January 2006
Topa Financial Center Receives Energy Star Award
On January 11, representatives from Topa Management Company were awarded an ENERGY STAR Building Plaque for the Topa Financial Center in downtown Honolulu. The ENERGY STAR label is a dual-agency award recognizing the most energy-efficient buildings in the nation. Topa Management Company is recognized by the U.S. Environmental Protection Agency and the U.S. Department of Energy for the implementation of energy efficiency measures and initiatives. View the Article January 19, 2006