Los Angeles Chinatown theater rebuilt for retail and bachelor pad

Willard Ford is proof that life-altering happenstance could be waiting just around the bend. While on a training ride in 1999, the avid cyclist turned a corner in Los Angeles’ Chinatown and encountered the dilapidated Kim Sing Theatre. The historic 1926 auditorium—once a destination for lively vaudeville acts, early talkie films and eventually kung fu movies—had been shuttered for more than a decade. Slated to be razed for new condos, Ford instead redeveloped the neglected theater into a mixed-use commercial and residential blueprint. “Sometimes when you deconstruct things and then reconstruct them, they work better,” says Ford.

Leilani Marie Labong
Designers
Austin Kelly, Willard Ford

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