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Wilshire Grand Project Kicks Off 20-hour Concrete Pour

Developers of the 73-story building aimed to set a Guinness world record.

The Wilshire Grand project in Downtown Los Angeles marked the beginning of construction Saturday.

The University of Southern California's marching band led a parade of concrete trucks to the construction site on Wilshire Boulevard, where Mayor Eric Garcetti kicked off their Guinness world record attempt for "largest continuous concrete pour in history."

More than 2,100 truckloads of concrete, weighing about 82 million pounds, were poured over a span of 20 hours to form the foundation of the 73-story Wilshire Grand building.

"Today's celebration isn't just a celebration about the building," said Mayor Garcetti. "Los Angeles is back on the move... and will lead this not only this city, but this state and this country, out of the recession."

Construction on the Wilshire Grand is expected to create more than 11,000 local jobs and generate $80 million in tax revenue.

City Councilmember Jose Huizar called the building the "future centerpiece of Downtown L.A."

The $1 billion project was developed by Korean Air and will be the tallest structure west of the Mississippi River upon completion in 2016.

The Wilshire Grand will include 900 hotel rooms and 400,000 feet of office and retail space.

"Think of the pyramids... the great castles in Europe... the cathedrals that draw your eyes to the heavens," said David Martin, principal architect of the Wilshire Grand.

"This building is that kind of building."

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