City National Plaza
Paul Hastings and City National Towers
City National Plaza is located in the Los Angeles metropolitan area
City National Plaza
Location within the Los Angeles metropolitan area
City National Plaza is located in California
City National Plaza
City National Plaza (California)
City National Plaza is located in the United States
City National Plaza
City National Plaza (the United States)
Former namesARCO Plaza (1972–2005)
Alternative namesARCO Center
ARCO Plaza
ARCO Plaza North Tower
ARCO Plaza South Tower
Atlantic Richfield Towers
Bank of America Tower
Los Angeles Twin Towers
General information
TypeCommercial offices
Location505-555 South Flower Street
Los Angeles, California
Coordinates34°03′03″N 118°15′25″W / 34.0508°N 118.2569°W / 34.0508; -118.2569Coordinates: 34°03′03″N 118°15′25″W / 34.0508°N 118.2569°W / 34.0508; -118.2569
Construction started1969
ManagementCommonWealth Partners
Roof213.3 m (700 ft)
Technical details
Floor count52
Floor area206,000 m2 (2.22 million sq ft)
Design and construction
ArchitectAlbert C. Martin & Associates
Main contractorRobert E. McKee, Inc.

City National Plaza is a twin tower skyscraper complex on South Flower Street in western Downtown Los Angeles, California, United States. It was originally named ARCO Plaza upon opening in 1972.


Richfield Tower

Further information: Richfield Tower

The present complex is on the site of the landmark Richfield Tower, that was designed in the Art Deco style by Morgan, Walls & Clements, and completed in 1929. It was the headquarters of the Atlantic Richfield oil company. It was demolished in the spring of 1969.

ARCO Plaza

The current skyscraper complex was built as the ARCO Plaza, with a pair of 213.3 m (700 ft) 52-story office towers. One became the new world headquarters for the Atlantic Richfield Company (ARCO), the present day Paul Hastings Tower.[9] An underground shopping complex was accessed by open escalators from the street level plaza.

Upon completion in 1972,[10] the ARCO Plaza towers were the tallest buildings in the city for one year before being overtaken by Aon Center, and were the tallest twin towers in the world until the completion of the World Trade Center in New York City. The towers are the tallest twin buildings in the United States outside of New York City, where the 55-floor Time Warner Center stands at 750 ft (230 m).

In 1986, joint owners ARCO and Bank of America sold the buildings to Shuwa Investments Corp., the American subsidiary of Shuwa Co. of Tokyo, for $650 million while both remained tenants in their respective named towers.[11] Shuwa later sold the property in 2003 to Thomas Properties Group and other investors for $270 million.[12][13][14]

The towers are constructed of steel frames covered with polished panels of forest green granite and panes of bronze glass. In 2016, the exterior of the top two floors and the service roof of The Paul Hastings Tower were modified on the north, east, and south flanks to house their upgraded headquarters and offices. This modification features silver trim and panes of light green glass panels.

City National Plaza

The ARCO Plaza complex was renamed City National Plaza in 2005,[15] and the south and north towers, respectively, were renamed City National Tower and Paul Hastings Tower.[16] The low-rise building at the back of the plaza is known as the Jewel Box, and is occupied by the Gensler architectural firm. Gensler moved from Santa Monica to the Jewel Box in 2011.[17]

The plaza includes a monumental sculpture-fountain, Double Ascension by artist Herbert Bayer.


"Jewel Box"

Paul Hastings Tower

Photograph of the Paul Hastings Tower from ground level in October 2013
Photograph of the Paul Hastings Tower from ground level in October 2013

City National Bank Tower

Shopping center

ARCO Plaza opened with a 220,000 sq ft (20,000 m2) shopping center on two levels which gained attention for the novelty of a shopping center within an office tower complex and for its sleek design of brick walkways, tiled and mirrored escalator wells and fresh flowers. There were over 40 shops and services and over 10 restaurants including “François”.[29] During the 2004 renovation, the lower shopping level was converted to parking and today the one remaining level is a food court.[30]

In popular culture


See also


  1. ^ "Paul Hastings Tower". CTBUH Skyscraper Center.
  2. ^ "City National Tower". CTBUH Skyscraper Center.
  3. ^ City National Plaza at Emporis
  4. ^ City National Tower at Glass Steel and Stone (archived)
  5. ^ Paul Hastings Tower at Glass Steel and Stone (archived)
  6. ^ "City National Tower". SkyscraperPage.
  7. ^ "Paul Hastings Tower". SkyscraperPage.
  8. ^ City National Plaza at Structurae
  9. ^ "ARCO...A Global Energy Company". Atlantic Richfield Company. 9 December 1997. Archived from the original on 13 January 1998. Retrieved 11 November 2010.
  10. ^ Weaver, John D. (October 1, 1972). "L.A. Grows Up". Los Angeles Times. p. N33. ProQuest 157158798. The latest additions to L.A.'s urban landscape are the twin 52-story towers of Atlantic Richfield Plaza--a mammoth, $188-million office complex and shopping center that rises on the same square block at Fifth and Flower where the old, gold-spired...
  11. ^ Broder, John M. (August 5, 1986). "Arco, B of A Will Sell Twin Tower Complex in L.A. : Deal With U.S. Unit of Shuwa Co. in Japan Will Give Both Needed Cash". Los Angeles Times.
  12. ^ Vincent, Roger (January 18, 2003). "Developer to Buy Arco Plaza: Once considered L.A.'s best corporate address, the complex is sold for $270 million, less than half its purchase price 16 years ago". Los Angeles Times.
  13. ^ "Thomas Properties Moves to Arco Plaza". Los Angeles Times. March 12, 2003.
  14. ^ Vincent, Roger (July 22, 2013). "Thomas Properties angling to buy out CalSTRS in joint venture". Los Angeles Times.
  15. ^ "Thomas Properties Group Signs Law Firm Fulbright & Jaworski at Arco Plaza". Business Wire (Press release). August 9, 2004.
  16. ^ Sanchez, Jesus (December 14, 2001). "Arco Tower to Become Paul Hastings Tower". Los Angeles Times. Retrieved 21 March 2017.
  17. ^ "Architecture firm Gensler to move from Santa Monica to downtown L.A." Los Angeles Times. 2011-02-04. Retrieved 2019-10-03.
  18. ^ Roger Vincent (February 4, 2011). "Architecture firm Gensler to move from Santa Monica to downtown L.A." Los Angeles Times. Retrieved 4 January 2013.
  19. ^ "Locations | Crowell & Moring LLP". Archived from the original on June 14, 2012.
  20. ^ "Regus Office Space in Los Angeles". Archived from the original on 2012-07-10. Retrieved 2012-07-14.
  21. ^ "Law Firm Takes Two Floors in City National Tower". Archived from the original on 2016-03-03. Retrieved 2012-07-14.
  22. ^ "Thomas Properties Group Signs Law Firm Fulbright & Jaworski At City National Plaza". Archived from the original on February 4, 2013.
  23. ^ "Jones Day's Los Angeles office relocates to City National Tower In downtown L.A." Archived from the original on 2019-01-10. Retrieved 2012-07-14.
  24. ^ "Los Angeles – Downtown".
  25. ^ "Kroll Office Locations". Archived from the original on 2011-08-10. Retrieved 2012-07-14.
  26. ^ "Rottet Studio". Rottet Studio.
  27. ^ "Turner Construction Office Network: Los Angeles / Anaheim". Turner Construction. Retrieved 16 July 2012.
  28. ^ "Los Angeles | White & Case LLP".
  29. ^ "Arco Plaza offers top variety". Los Angeles Times. Los Angeles, California. November 30, 1973. p. 141.
  30. ^ “City National Plaza”, Los Angeles Conservancy

Further reading