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RAlossi
May 10, 2011, 2:19 AM
Anyone else noticed a whole lot of streets in Central LA (Koreatown, Westlake specifically) getting repaved recently? It's a nice change from the potholed mess that these streets usually are. Now, if only they can get Wilshire started...

Ivan
May 10, 2011, 5:23 AM
look at hollywood! :tup:

LAofAnaheim
May 10, 2011, 2:52 PM
Thanks to Antonio Villairaigosa and Measure R! There will always be haters about it....but, in reality, a lot of that funding is due to the 3% local return from Measure R, which we wouldn't have had if it wasn't for Antonio's push in 2008.

pesto
May 10, 2011, 3:12 PM
http://la.curbed.com/uploads/2011_04_worknotice.jpg
http://la.curbed.com/uploads/2011_04_worknotice.jpg

"May release a natural gas odor" sounds like it could be a problem for locals. Hopefully it's minimal.

DistrictDirt
May 10, 2011, 9:53 PM
Anyone else noticed a whole lot of streets in Central LA (Koreatown, Westlake specifically) getting repaved recently? It's a nice change from the potholed mess that these streets usually are. Now, if only they can get Wilshire started...

I hadn't noticed yet but that's great to hear. Hope they do Wilshire, 5th, 6th, and 7th...they all need it. I commute via the 720 Rapid bus mostly, and you can feel the potholes just destroying those vehicles. Whatever money the city has saved by deferring road maintenance for this long, they have undoubtedly paid for and then some in the damage done to Metro buses.

dktshb
May 11, 2011, 1:04 AM
Anyone else noticed a whole lot of streets in Central LA (Koreatown, Westlake specifically) getting repaved recently? It's a nice change from the potholed mess that these streets usually are. Now, if only they can get Wilshire started...

They repaved my street here in Hollywood and some dumb azz ignored the yellow tape and drove thru it before it was dry F'n up the whole street.

sopas ej
May 14, 2011, 12:31 AM
The 710 tunnel is going to be a big 'ole new freeway that will connect two existing freeways.


Hopefully this will never be built. I'm totally anti-710 tunnel/surface route extension. Not only is South Pasadena against any kind of 710 extension, so are the cities of Glendale and La Cañada Flintridge and the LA neighborhoods of El Sereno and Eagle Rock.

SD_Phil
May 14, 2011, 1:02 AM
They repaved my street here in Hollywood and some dumb azz ignored the yellow tape and drove thru it before it was dry F'n up the whole street.

If it's someone in your neighborhood you should call the cops on them. That kind of slurry will stick to tires.

ChelseaFC
May 14, 2011, 1:36 AM
Hopefully this will never be built. I'm totally anti-710 tunnel/surface route extension. Not only is South Pasadena against any kind of 710 extension, so are the cities of Glendale and La Cañada Flintridge and the LA neighborhoods of El Sereno and Eagle Rock.

I see it differently. I live in South Pasadena, and I wouldn't mind a tunnel route at all. The traffic on Fair Oaks and Fremont is ridiculous and totally takes away from our small-town vibe. During rush hour you literally cannot move through our city because of the congestion that we get from all the 710 traffic that dumps off in Alhambra. But if they go under us, what should we care? It gets everyone who DOESN'T live in our city out of our way. Frankly I'm tired of people using South Pas as a commuting link.

That said, the notion that this state could ever come up with the BILLIONS needed to build a tunnel from Alhambra to Pasadena is quite amusing.

Easy
May 14, 2011, 2:44 AM
Hollywood

New $1 billion project with the tallest of two towers at 48 stories.

http://www.latimes.com/media/photo/2011-05/61592962.jpg

Big building project planned around Capitol Records Tower (http://www.latimes.com/business/la-fi-capitol-records-project-20110514,0,4938296.story)


After going mostly on hiatus during the economic downturn, Hollywood is poised to debut a major development project around the famed Capitol Records Tower near Hollywood and Vine.

The owners of the Capitol Records building on Vine Street are seeking approval to build 1 million square feet of structures, including two skyscrapers, surrounding the famous cylindrical office tower resembling a stack of record discs. The mixed-use complex could be valued at as much as $1 billion.

The Millennium Hollywood project, proposed by developers Millennium Partners and Argent Ventures, would be primarily residential but also have a hotel, offices, restaurants and stores. It would be built on the Capitol Records parking lot and another parking lot across Vine Street.

The New York developers bought the 13-story Capitol Records Tower in 2006 and the parking lot across Vine Street next to the Avalon theater in 2007. They shelved plans to develop the properties when the economy collapsed but are restarting the approval process, which they expect to last 18 months or more.

Millennium Hollywood's appearance and uses would be influenced by the review process, the developers said, but they hope to build a large-scale complex that would change the dynamic of the neighborhood.

LosAngelesBeauty
May 14, 2011, 2:54 AM
Here's the headline picture that came with the article that shows the two towers:

http://img853.imageshack.us/img853/864/unleddwa.jpg (http://imageshack.us/photo/my-images/853/unleddwa.jpg/)

Easy
May 14, 2011, 3:06 AM
I'd love to see this get built. I wonder how many lawsuits there will be?

JDRCRASH
May 14, 2011, 3:17 AM
^

Don't know, but i'm more worried about red tape and regulation. I'm sorry, but it should not take 1 1/2 years for a development to go through the approval process.

Completely unacceptable.

Easy
May 14, 2011, 3:24 AM
I'm sorry, but it should not take 1 1/2 years for a development to go through the approval process.

True, but I doubt that they are in a hurry.

sopas ej
May 14, 2011, 4:01 AM
I see it differently. I live in South Pasadena, and I wouldn't mind a tunnel route at all. The traffic on Fair Oaks and Fremont is ridiculous and totally takes away from our small-town vibe. During rush hour you literally cannot move through our city because of the congestion that we get from all the 710 traffic that dumps off in Alhambra. But if they go under us, what should we care? It gets everyone who DOESN'T live in our city out of our way. Frankly I'm tired of people using South Pas as a commuting link.

That said, the notion that this state could ever come up with the BILLIONS needed to build a tunnel from Alhambra to Pasadena is quite amusing.

I beg to differ. The plans for the tunnel call for NO onramps or offramps to or from the tunnel. The tunnel would take care of through traffic, but local traffic would still travel our streets. So even locals who wanted to get to the 710 or 210 freeway would have to travel our streets to get to those freeways, being that they wouldn't have direct access to the tunnel. And, the tunnel is planned as a toll tunnel. I think this will also turn off many drivers; it's been my experience traveling through south Orange County that most people still take the 5 and/or 405 instead of the 73 tollway, simply because those freeways are free, though more congested through that area. The tunnel would mainly be used by big rig trucks-- which would at least get those off of our streets, but I don't think the tunnel would get rid of that much traffic off of our surface streets. Plus, there would have to be ventilation shafts built, and those would more than likely be a blight.

Illithid Dude
May 14, 2011, 5:43 AM
Hollywood

New $1 billion project with the tallest of two towers at 48 stories.

http://www.latimes.com/media/photo/2011-05/61592962.jpg

Big building project planned around Capitol Records Tower (http://www.latimes.com/business/la-fi-capitol-records-project-20110514,0,4938296.story)

Wow. That came out of nowhere. It's sort of strange that all of the Big L.A. Metro projects somehow materialize on late night Friday. I remember being surprised when they announced the Vermont/Wilshire project on Friday night, and now there is this. Huh.

ChelseaFC
May 14, 2011, 8:06 AM
I beg to differ. The plans for the tunnel call for NO onramps or offramps to or from the tunnel.

Dude you're missing the whole point of the tunnel. No on-ramps or off-ramps is what you WANT. Fair Oaks and Fremont would be for locals only. As things stand, South Pas currently serves as one massive "off-ramp" for people who don't live here. Off-ramps are what give non-locals an excuse to get off in your city and create that ghetto rest stop-vibe you get with Covina, Inglewood, Commerce, and other LA cities that have a major surface freeway splitting the city down the middle. Part of the small town charm of South Pas is that it doesn't feel like just any other city or stop along the way. It definitely used to be a pocket of serenity, but rush hour these days makes it insufferable.


The tunnel would take care of through traffic, but local traffic would still travel our streets.

This is confusing. Not sure why you're so against LOCAL traffic. If the only cars that ever traveled Fair Oaks were from South Pas and San Marino, there would be ZERO traffic in our city.



And, the tunnel is planned as a toll tunnel. I think this will also turn off many drivers; it's been my experience traveling through south Orange County that most people still take the 5 and/or 405 instead of the 73 tollway, simply because those freeways are free, though more congested through that area. The tunnel would mainly be used by big rig trucks-- which would at least get those off of our streets, but I don't think the tunnel would get rid of that much traffic off of our surface streets.

As much as we hate having commuters creating thru-traffic on our streets, I can guarantee you they hate sitting in our traffic even more. Having to deal with that nightmare 710 off-ramp at Valley and then making your way north currently adds 30-35 minutes AT LEAST to one's trip to Pasadena or Glendale. And the toll would probably be at the very most $20-30/month for that amount of time savings. Trust me, people only go through South Pas because they have to.


Plus, there would have to be ventilation shafts built, and those would more than likely be a blight.

As for the ventilation "shafts", I don't think they are what you think they are. I think people have this image of ventilation ducts being these turn-of-the-century 5-story monstrosities with carbon monoxide pouring out. With today's technology, they can make them very inconspicuous and wouldn't look all that different from a simple grate in the ground or rainwater gutter.

edluva
May 14, 2011, 8:50 AM
so does anybody want to take bets on this one not going up? another of the pie-in-the-sky proposals that la has seen all too often?

seriously though where is the demand for this kind of development? we are in the midst of a double dip in housing and commercial's in even worse shape here. they have to be out of their minds

202_Cyclist
May 14, 2011, 3:48 PM
so does anybody want to take bets on this one not going up? another of the pie-in-the-sky proposals that la has seen all too often?

seriously though where is the demand for this kind of development? we are in the midst of a double dip in housing and commercial's in even worse shape here. they have to be out of their minds

I'm not in the development industry but I wouldn't be so pessimistic. As someone said, 1 1/2 years to be approved, construction would last 2-3 yrs. This means it would come on the market in 2014-15. We might not have the 1990s-booming economy then but the unemployment rate has been coming down for months (although not fast enough) and GDP continues to expand. The WSJ also had an article yesterday about global elites becoming major players in real estate markets across the world, such as French in NY or Russians in London. While the US economy continues to slowly putter along and recover, Asian and Latin American economies continue to do well. With this, combined with domestic demand, I don't think it is unrealistic at all to expect buyers for these units in 2014-15, especially if some of these are offered as rentals rather than condos.

pesto
May 14, 2011, 5:35 PM
Lawsuits, funding, red tape: all legitimate concerns. Assuming them all away for the moment, to me th big concern is to make this fit with what's already there. It looks like they are making a decent effort to be loosened up modernism and blend with the Capitol Building. This is good since they are part of a community not a one-off showpiece.

The plazas are good since the Boulevard is rather crowded, but they should be limited. This is a good place and good opportunity to avoid Bunker Hill, Century City and LA Live that ended up with too many plazas and metal/glass and lost much sense of an urban community. Hollywood has the potential to have this in spades, and the alley utitlization ordinances are pushing in this direction. There should be non-linearity and quick access from doors (building or parking) into street life or active passageways.

If done right, this area could attract thousands at night and be very active in the day as well. Do it right.

Illithid Dude
May 14, 2011, 11:58 PM
Lawsuits, funding, red tape: all legitimate concerns. Assuming them all away for the moment, to me th big concern is to make this fit with what's already there. It looks like they are making a decent effort to be loosened up modernism and blend with the Capitol Building. This is good since they are part of a community not a one-off showpiece.

The plazas are good since the Boulevard is rather crowded, but they should be limited. This is a good place and good opportunity to avoid Bunker Hill, Century City and LA Live that ended up with too many plazas and metal/glass and lost much sense of an urban community. Hollywood has the potential to have this in spades, and the alley utitlization ordinances are pushing in this direction. There should be non-linearity and quick access from doors (building or parking) into street life or active passageways.

If done right, this area could attract thousands at night and be very active in the day as well. Do it right.

A little off topic, but you think L.A. Live has too many plazas? Huh. It reminded me more of walkways between buildings, with that one central plaza in the middle. Plus, the plaza is in the middle of the complex, not street facing like the ones at Bunker Hill.

djlx2
May 15, 2011, 1:50 AM
:previous: it helps to have fewer and better plazas rather than multiple underdeveloped ones. occasionally developers will attempt to put one in the middle of buildings for the specific tenants of those buildings to use, instead of constantly pulling people off the street. sometimes this works out well, but it's really important to have plazas put to good use.

pesto
May 15, 2011, 3:59 PM
Actually I think that CC has too many plazas (or open space) and Broadway has too few. Hollywood Blvd. has too few but that's OK if you have some open spaces on Selma, Vine, Cahuenga or whatever street.

Between Highland and Gower, north of the Boulevard it's pretty dense with lots of high-rise. The parking lots that get built-on should have some "non-built" areas, but I don't like to call them "open space". Better to call them low-rise with activity. Small plazas with water, greenery and outdoor seating; small parks with Hollywood exhibits or themes; play areas for small children; bike rentals or parking areas; etc., are all good. They turn a plaza into a place of activity rather than a place of concrete and derelicts.

Same idea for Selma. More alley "activation" and projects like the Urban Outfitters complex among the medium-rise.

RST500
May 15, 2011, 6:10 PM
Here's the headline picture that came with the article that shows the two towers:

http://img853.imageshack.us/img853/864/unleddwa.jpg (http://imageshack.us/photo/my-images/853/unleddwa.jpg/)


I have mixed feelings about this project. On one hand its exiting to have something this tall get built but on the other hand its out of place near the Tower Records building. I think Hollywood should have a height cap on about 20 stories. However I would love to see 40-50 story towers go up in Miricle Mile which unfortounatly is getting filled up with 4-5 story buildings.

LosAngelesBeauty
May 15, 2011, 6:17 PM
I have mixed feelings about this project. On one hand its exiting to have something this tall get built but on the other hand its out of place near the Tower Records building. I think Hollywood should have a height cap on about 20 stories. However I would love to see 40-50 story towers go up in Miricle Mile which unfortounatly is getting filled up with 4-5 story buildings.

I never thought about it like that but I actually agree with you. Also wish this group would buy more land in DTLA and build towers this tall there.

sopas ej
May 15, 2011, 7:08 PM
This is confusing. Not sure why you're so against LOCAL traffic. If the only cars that ever traveled Fair Oaks were from South Pas and San Marino, there would be ZERO traffic in our city.

I didn't say I was against local traffic. And by local traffic, in that quote you were referencing, I mean it in that "non-express lane" way, meaning having the option to access the broad area between the 210 and 10 freeways; I also meant by "local," not just South Pas and San Marino residents, but northern Alhambra and City of San Gabriel residents too:
http://img859.imageshack.us/img859/2027/710tunnelareamap.png
Google Maps

Look at the gap the tunnel would close; it's 4.5 miles. Again, it would take care of through traffic, and by that I mean from drivers who are already coming from points south of the 10 and north of the 210, but anyone in the area in between would still have to drive on surface streets, just like now. I doubt most northern Alhambra and San Gabriel residents wanting to get to Pasadena and Glendale would drive SOUTH to the 10 to access the tunnel to go back north. They would just drive surface streets through San Marino and South Pas to get to Pasadena, just like they already do now.

Dude you're missing the whole point of the tunnel. No on-ramps or off-ramps is what you WANT.

I think you missed my point, in that in terms of "better" freeway access, this tunnel serves no purpose to the locals (South Pas, San Marino, northern Alhambra, etc. residents), which I more or less explained why in my above paragraph. But yeah, I wouldn't want any on or off ramps to this tunnel, because then that would increase east-west traffic through our area, and would involve serious trenching and digging for those ramps.

As a side bar, the 710 tunnel plan also includes a possible Huntington Drive access/exit point, which I don't like at all. Of course that would involve digging and trenching where Huntington Drive would meet the proposed tunnel.


As for the ventilation "shafts", I don't think they are what you think they are. I think people have this image of ventilation ducts being these turn-of-the-century 5-story monstrosities with carbon monoxide pouring out. With today's technology, they can make them very inconspicuous and wouldn't look all that different from a simple grate in the ground or rainwater gutter.

These are some renderings taken from the 710 tunnel final report, which says that these ventilation towers might be as high as 100 feet:

http://imageshack.us/m/813/1125/ventilationtower.png

It's possible that they would try to somehow disguise them, but that still doesn't sit well with me:

Fake Water Tower ventilation tower
http://imageshack.us/m/811/771/picture2ve.png

Mission Revival ventilation tower
http://imageshack.us/m/14/6260/picture1vku.png

Crafstman ventilation tower
http://imageshack.us/m/834/9264/picture3wu.png

They'd also try to screen these with trees. And of course there'd have to be emergency access passageways.

In the end, I think the tunnel is more trouble than it's worth. When the Alameda East rail corridor is completed, that would take away even more big rig traffic off the 710 freeway. Plus, the only city that's really extremely for the tunnel is Alhambra, which in my opinion, has done NOTHING to mitigate its traffic problems. True, the bottleneck created by where the 710 ends at Valley Blvd. is awful, but Alhambra hasn't done anything like synchronizing traffic lights or other measures to relieve traffic. I've always thought that the 710 should at least be extended north to Mission Road, and that would relieve some of the bottleneck at Valley.

dachacon
May 15, 2011, 11:18 PM
I have mixed feelings about this project. On one hand its exiting to have something this tall get built but on the other hand its out of place near the Tower Records building. I think Hollywood should have a height cap on about 20 stories. However I would love to see 40-50 story towers go up in Miricle Mile which unfortounatly is getting filled up with 4-5 story buildings.


im kinda on the same boat with you but the height limit should be spread out a little more. having 30 to 35 storey buildings along the major streets like Hollywood, Santa Monica, Sunset and maybe Melrose, then traveling south to Beverly, and Wilshire, along the lines in height of Condo Canyon, which is 400ft i believe. then the streets in between the major ones, have a height limit of 150ft which would limit buildings to 12 or 13 floors. and have that spread out all over East Hollywood, Hollywood, and Koreatown. This helps defuse some of the anti development in LA, Like New York did with Manhattan, make all the High rise and Urban development in one area of the city, allowing people to choose whether they want to be in an urban environment or suburbia (aka the San Fernando Valley).

Creating an Urban District that basically takes over all of Central LA will solve alot of the the development problems we have now.

Edit: Sorry reading my post after posting it, i realized i just rambled on and just got off topic my apologies.

pesto
May 16, 2011, 4:00 PM
im kinda on the same boat with you but the height limit should be spread out a little more. having 30 to 35 storey buildings along the major streets like Hollywood, Santa Monica, Sunset and maybe Melrose, then traveling south to Beverly, and Wilshire, along the lines in height of Condo Canyon, which is 400ft i believe. then the streets in between the major ones, have a height limit of 150ft which would limit buildings to 12 or 13 floors. and have that spread out all over East Hollywood, Hollywood, and Koreatown. This helps defuse some of the anti development in LA, Like New York did with Manhattan, make all the High rise and Urban development in one area of the city, allowing people to choose whether they want to be in an urban environment or suburbia (aka the San Fernando Valley).

Creating an Urban District that basically takes over all of Central LA will solve alot of the the development problems we have now.

Edit: Sorry reading my post after posting it, i realized i just rambled on and just got off topic my apologies.

Agree. This is just about right. But emphasize Sunset and Hollywood since demand exists there. Wilshire and immediately surrounding as well, subject to preserving the gems along that corridor.

DistrictDirt
May 16, 2011, 7:20 PM
Lawsuits, funding, red tape: all legitimate concerns. Assuming them all away for the moment, to me th big concern is to make this fit with what's already there. It looks like they are making a decent effort to be loosened up modernism and blend with the Capitol Building. This is good since they are part of a community not a one-off showpiece.

The plazas are good since the Boulevard is rather crowded, but they should be limited. This is a good place and good opportunity to avoid Bunker Hill, Century City and LA Live that ended up with too many plazas and metal/glass and lost much sense of an urban community. Hollywood has the potential to have this in spades, and the alley utitlization ordinances are pushing in this direction. There should be non-linearity and quick access from doors (building or parking) into street life or active passageways.

If done right, this area could attract thousands at night and be very active in the day as well. Do it right.

I would argue that the problem with the Bunker Hill plazas is not that there are too many of them, but that there is nothing to activate them. Surround a plaza with retail on all sides, and it will always be lively with pedestrian activity. A good example is the TOD at Wilshire/Vermont.

Hopefully the developers of Capitol Records project will tightly integrate any plazas with retail.

ChelseaFC
May 16, 2011, 7:57 PM
Look at the gap the tunnel would close; it's 4.5 miles. Again, it would take care of through traffic, and by that I mean from drivers who are already coming from points south of the 10 and north of the 210, but anyone in the area in between would still have to drive on surface streets, just like now. I doubt most northern Alhambra and San Gabriel residents wanting to get to Pasadena and Glendale would drive SOUTH to the 10 to access the tunnel to go back north. They would just drive surface streets through San Marino and South Pas to get to Pasadena, just like they already do now.

I actually think the 710 tunnel would be a welcome extension for many of those people. The freeway would be much faster for many Alhambra residents. I would estimate about half would take the 710 tunnel to Pasadena/Glendale, and the other half would still use Fremont. That's a good improvement for me. As for San Gabriel, no one I know from San Gabriel comes through South Pas to get to Pasadena. They use San Gabriel Blvd and Oak Knoll.


As a side bar, the 710 tunnel plan also includes a possible Huntington Drive access/exit point, which I don't like at all. Of course that would involve digging and trenching where Huntington Drive would meet the proposed tunnel.

Definitely. No access/exits whatsoever in South Pas.



It's possible that they would try to somehow disguise them, but that still doesn't sit well with me: They'd also try to screen these with trees. And of course there'd have to be emergency access passageways.

See but I don't mind that at all, especially if they are out of the way and not interfering with residential areas. Place them along the Gold Line (some kind of faux clock tower/train signal), put them behind retail stores. It can definitely be done.


In the end, I think the tunnel is more trouble than it's worth.

I tend to agree with this. I'm just trying to dismiss this ridiculous notion by the NIMBYs in our city that a tunnel would be the worst evil to ever hit our little town. It really wouldn't have any kind of effect at all, besides the positive effect of relieving some congestion during rush hour. I always find it amusing when I ask someone in South Pas why they're so against the tunnel option, and they struggle to come up with a direct or coherent response, such as "Well, just because" or "the 710 extension in any form is bad". It's almost as if they've been brainwashed, and haven't actually thought it through for themselves.

RST500
May 16, 2011, 8:00 PM
I never thought about it like that but I actually agree with you. Also wish this group would buy more land in DTLA and build towers this tall there.

Hollywood does seem to be very pro-growth. I would also like to see a highrise cluster around the Beverly Center but that area along with Miricle Mile has strong NIMBY sentiment. Hopefully that will change with the subway expansion.

pesto
May 17, 2011, 5:08 PM
I would argue that the problem with the Bunker Hill plazas is not that there are too many of them, but that there is nothing to activate them. Surround a plaza with retail on all sides, and it will always be lively with pedestrian activity. A good example is the TOD at Wilshire/Vermont.

Hopefully the developers of Capitol Records project will tightly integrate any plazas with retail.

Agreed. Plazas are OK if filled with retail and activity. I'm really just saying that the Millenium Hollywood plazas should be filled with retail, outdoor cafes, seating under trees, child play areas, bike racks, whatever, from day 1. Community, not grandeur.

pesto
May 17, 2011, 5:17 PM
Hollywood does seem to be very pro-growth. I would also like to see a highrise cluster around the Beverly Center but that area along with Miricle Mile has strong NIMBY sentiment. Hopefully that will change with the subway expansion.

You're right. Beverly Center is a real problem because it has very nice residential areas abutting heavy traffic and intense commercial activity and demand. Growth here has to be medium-rise and limited in location or it will affect nice neighborhoods. I don't think the subway will change things dramatically but it will help justify medium-rise on the major streets.

Hollywood had the "advantage" of being much more rundown. Only the hardcore crazies were going to argue that you were ruining a neighborhood with new construction; it was already ruined. As long as you stay south of Yucca, there shouldn't be powerful anti-growth forces. But you will get the parasites and their lawyers that figure they can extort some money from developers. But very little principled opposition.

JDRCRASH
May 18, 2011, 2:33 AM
I have never seen so much stupidity on a Curbed LA thread in a very long time. It's so damn annoying:

http://la.curbed.com/archives/2011/05/capitol_records_owners_want_to_give_it_hotel_condo_neighbors.php

LosAngelesBeauty
May 18, 2011, 7:50 AM
Remember Circa folks? The project was canceled, and the site sat dormant for YEARS.

Well, something is happening again with fencing going around the perimeter.

I am wondering what it could mean...


Intersection of Virgil/Wilshire in Koreatown
http://img717.imageshack.us/img717/7205/img5444f.jpg (http://imageshack.us/photo/my-images/717/img5444f.jpg/)


http://img31.imageshack.us/img31/9523/img5441s.jpg (http://imageshack.us/photo/my-images/31/img5441s.jpg/)


http://img19.imageshack.us/img19/7545/img5446u.jpg (http://imageshack.us/photo/my-images/19/img5446u.jpg/)

RAlossi
May 18, 2011, 8:28 AM
It's been up for maybe two months now. I'd love to think that something's happening there. Then just up the block, there's fencing around the "condotel" project at 6th and Virgil. Also, at the lot across the street from Wilshire/Vermont. It'd be great to see all three projects under construction at the same time!

colemonkee
May 18, 2011, 3:01 PM
Refresh us with what Circa looks like?

LosAngelesBeauty
May 18, 2011, 6:27 PM
Here's a pic from Curbed LA

http://la.curbed.com/uploads/2008.05.circa.jpg

RST500
May 18, 2011, 10:23 PM
You're right. Beverly Center is a real problem because it has very nice residential areas abutting heavy traffic and intense commercial activity and demand. Growth here has to be medium-rise and limited in location or it will affect nice neighborhoods. I don't think the subway will change things dramatically but it will help justify medium-rise on the major streets.

Hollywood had the "advantage" of being much more rundown. Only the hardcore crazies were going to argue that you were ruining a neighborhood with new construction; it was already ruined. As long as you stay south of Yucca, there shouldn't be powerful anti-growth forces. But you will get the parasites and their lawyers that figure they can extort some money from developers. But very little principled opposition.


Same with Koreatown being traditionally ghetto making it more grow growth than more affluent areas like Mirricle Mile. I have stated this before but I have always envisioned the Beverly Center as LA's vcersion Time Square with electronic billboards and a 40-50 story tower where that multi story marking lot south of the Berverly Center were Las Cienega meets Burton Way and another one of two 20 something towers were the Beverly Connection is.

Easy
May 19, 2011, 12:37 AM
Oh, I see. Circa is the old Williams & Dame project. Unless I'm not remembering correctly they either lost or sold that land a few months back and I don't recall hearing about a new project.

BrandonJXN
May 19, 2011, 1:02 AM
Same with Koreatown being traditionally ghetto making it more grow growth than more affluent areas like Mirricle Mile. I have stated this before but I have always envisioned the Beverly Center as LA's vcersion Time Square with electronic billboards and a 40-50 story tower where that multi story marking lot south of the Berverly Center were Las Cienega meets Burton Way and another one of two 20 something towers were the Beverly Connection is.

Oh God. Not unless there is a subway stop somewhere near. That area is already awful in terms of traffic (made even worse by how jacked up the streets come together).

JDRCRASH
May 19, 2011, 2:11 AM
Same with Koreatown being traditionally ghetto making it more grow growth than more affluent areas like Mirricle Mile. I have stated this before but I have always envisioned the Beverly Center as LA's vcersion Time Square with electronic billboards and a 40-50 story tower where that multi story marking lot south of the Berverly Center were Las Cienega meets Burton Way and another one of two 20 something towers were the Beverly Connection is.

LA Live, and much of Hollywood Blvd have already taken the title of "Times Square West".

mdiederi
May 19, 2011, 5:07 AM
The new Vincent Price Art Museum opens this Friday at the East Los Angeles College (1301 Avenida Cesar Chavez, Monterey Park).

http://img.photobucket.com/albums/v120/mdiederi/Picture22.png
https://www.facebook.com/profile.php?id=1378914154#!/vincentprice.artmuseum

RST500
May 19, 2011, 6:29 PM
LA Live, and much of Hollywood Blvd have already taken the title of "Times Square West".

I am aware of that but LA Live looks nothing remotely close with all the empty parking lots. Maybe if they build LA Central it will be a big step in that direction. Am I the only one who see's great potential for the Beverly Center. I know trafic and NIMBY's are a problem but some day it will happen.

colemonkee
May 19, 2011, 6:44 PM
The Vincent Price Museum looks good! Though I rue the choice of stucco. Would be so much better with metal panels.

pesto
May 19, 2011, 6:46 PM
Santa Monica and Beverly Center/WeHo will probably continue as the up market nightlife zones, with Hollywood and downtown more mixed. But anything over 20 has almost no chance of being built in the LA part of Beverly Center and literally no chance in BH or WeHo.

I can only add that building Crenshaw and Foothill and not the Pink line is a huge blunder for the future of density in that area and along Santa Monica to Hollywood.

C.Lan
May 19, 2011, 7:15 PM
I am aware of that but LA Live looks nothing remotely close with all the empty parking lots. Maybe if they build LA Central it will be a big step in that direction. Am I the only one who see's great potential for the Beverly Center. I know trafic and NIMBY's are a problem but some day it will happen.

I think growth in this area will be determined by overall vibrancy of the area, and so on.

LAofAnaheim
May 19, 2011, 7:46 PM
I am aware of that but LA Live looks nothing remotely close with all the empty parking lots. Maybe if they build LA Central it will be a big step in that direction. Am I the only one who see's great potential for the Beverly Center. I know trafic and NIMBY's are a problem but some day it will happen.

Traffic is not problem...it's the lack of alternatives that are the problem. Drivers in New York complain the same about "NY traffic" as LA drivers complain about "LA traffic". The only difference is the lack of significant transit alternatives. That's the real fight. Traffic will never ever ever go away (evidence: London, Tokyo, Paris, New York, Chicago, Moscow, Athens, etc..)

DistrictDirt
May 20, 2011, 6:04 PM
Here's a pic from Curbed LA

http://la.curbed.com/uploads/2008.05.circa.jpg

The podiums must be stopped. If we really need that much parking, can't it be underground? It looks terrible at street level. My office window looks out on the podium for the Solair and its...well, see for yourself:

http://i.imgur.com/AJ2Mh.jpg

Kingofthehill
May 25, 2011, 3:44 PM
diggin' these new homes in echo park:

http://farm4.static.flickr.com/3108/5758907014_c2b53b4820_b.jpg

Illithid Dude
May 26, 2011, 2:13 AM
diggin' these new homes in echo park:

http://farm4.static.flickr.com/3108/5758907014_c2b53b4820_b.jpg

Not bad for Los Angeles. Or for infill. I really need to get down to that area, as I've never been. Any good places to go for modern architecture or just general urbanity?

Kingofthehill
May 26, 2011, 3:38 AM
Silverlake, Venice, and random parts of West Hollywood, Santa Monica and Culver City. If you're willing to walk around, just about any hilly area has good contemporary architecture; finding them is more difficult, as one cannot just stumble upon one (i.e, hidden behind gates/shrubbery). Hollywood has some good multi-family stuff in the area bounded between Sunset, Franklin, La Brea, and the 101. The canal areas in Venice have the best SFR examples. The late, great Steven Kanner had some excellent projects in/around Santa Monica. Here is his website: http://www.kannerarch.com/en/. Lastly, a good number of Brooks + Scarpa's work is in LA: http://www.pugh-scarpa.com/projects/all.projects. Enjoy.

For general urbanity? Check my full-out guide to LA's urban areas by reading my reply (#11) in this (http://www.skyscrapercity.com/showthread.php?t=1282673) thread.

Illithid Dude
May 26, 2011, 4:00 AM
Silverlake, Venice, and random parts of West Hollywood, Santa Monica and Culver City. If you're willing to walk around, just about any hilly area has good contemporary architecture; finding them is more difficult, as one cannot just stumble upon one (i.e, hidden behind gates/shrubbery). Hollywood has some good multi-family stuff in the area bounded between Sunset, Franklin, La Brea, and the 101. The canal areas in Venice have the best SFR examples. The late, great Steven Kanner had some excellent projects in/around Santa Monica. Here is his website: http://www.kannerarch.com/en/. Lastly, a good number of Brooks + Scarpa's work is in LA: http://www.pugh-scarpa.com/projects/all.projects. Enjoy.

For general urbanity? Check my full-out guide to LA's urban areas by reading my reply (#11) in this (http://www.skyscrapercity.com/showthread.php?t=1282673) thread.

I actually live in L.A., funnily enough. Santa Monica no less. I was referring to mostly Echo Park and Silver Lake, but hey! Thanks for the guide!

Muji
Jun 1, 2011, 6:11 PM
I noticed the beginning of construction yesterday on a new development called Normandie Terrace, on Normandie just north of 6th St. Apparently it's a 66 unit affordable housing complex (some details here (http://lahd.lacity.org/lahdinternet/Portals/0/MajorProjects/1%20fo%201%20Replacement%20Plan%20NT.pdf)). Also managed to track down some decent-looking renderings that I dont think I've seen around here.

Photo credits: PSL Architects (http://pslarchitects.com/normandie.html)
http://pslarchitects.com/images/projects/normandie.1.jpg

http://pslarchitects.com/images/projects/normandie.2.jpg

PSL Architects have also designed the similarly-designed 5555 Hollywood Boulevard senior housing project.

RAlossi
Jun 1, 2011, 7:54 PM
Cool. Is it replacing the strip mall or parking lot on the corner, or is it a tear-down/rebuild project farther north on the street?

Double L
Jun 1, 2011, 8:50 PM
diggin' these new homes in echo park:

http://farm4.static.flickr.com/3108/5758907014_c2b53b4820_b.jpg

Not sure if Los Angeles is doing the same but Houston is getting tons of projects like this.

Muji
Jun 2, 2011, 10:43 PM
Cool. Is it replacing the strip mall or parking lot on the corner, or is it a tear-down/rebuild project farther north on the street?

It's a tear down of some older apartment buildings just north of 6th, kinda seen in this Curbed post (http://la.curbed.com/archives/2011/04/whats_this_holey_roof_mystery_in_koreatown.php) from when they were being demolished.

sopas ej
Jun 4, 2011, 12:31 AM
From the Los Angeles Times:

Critic's Notebook: Hollywood landmark at a crossroads
New York developers are reviving plans to surround the Capitol Records building with a mixed-use project covering 1 million square feet. Whether it would enhance or detract from the iconic structure depends on fuzzy details.

http://www.latimes.com/media/photo/2011-05/61908798.jpg
REVISED SKYLINE: This rendering shows a view of the proposed development from the north, but many details have to be ironed out. (Handel Architects)

By Christopher Hawthorne, Los Angeles Times
May 29, 2011

When it opened in 1956, the Capitol Records building was surrounded mostly by surface parking lots, making it easy to spot from the nearby — and brand-new — Hollywood Freeway. The cylindrical design for the building, by Welton Becket and a young architect in Becket's office, Louis Naidorf, played beautifully to its mobile audience and that wide-open urban landscape. The result was a 13-story tower with the confidence and allure of a major skyscraper.

Hollywood has changed a great deal in the intervening years: Along with a stretch of subway and a more crowded skyline, it has acquired a freshly scrubbed civic reputation. But Becket's tower, on Vine Street just north of Hollywood Boulevard, relates to its peculiar context pretty much as it always has. Many of its immediate neighbors are still surface parking lots, and when you see the building from the freeway you get the same instant sense that you've arrived in Hollywood. Viewed from the south, meanwhile, Capitol Records is even more prominent, framed against a postcard-ready backdrop of the freeway, the hills and the Hollywood sign.

Even in Los Angeles, though, open space is not eternal. Neither are parking lots, however hardy some of them have proved as urban specimens in this city. As if to symbolize all the ways that L.A. is changing as it grows denser, slowly and haphazardly filling in its empty urban pockets, this month a pair of New York developers, Millennium Partners and Argent Ventures, announced they are reviving a proposal to surround the Capitol Records building with a mixed-use project covering roughly 1 million square feet. The plan had been slowed but not completely derailed by the recession.

Working with New York architect Gary Handel and L.A. architect William Roschen, the developers hope to create something of an urban village on both sides of Vine. Becket's tower would be the centerpiece of the 4.5-acre project, which may also include a boutique hotel, rental apartments, condos, office space and a substantial amount of retail.

[...]

Read the rest by clicking esto (http://www.latimes.com/entertainment/news/la-ca-capitolrecords-20110529,0,3478155.story?track=la-hp-market-news-hollywood-building-up-20110530-sl).

colemonkee
Jun 4, 2011, 7:25 AM
Very interesting piece, and it seems to me that ultimately he has a positive view the development - and the scale. I hope the developers read his piece and take what he says to heart. I think he makes a lot of good points that could only improve the project.

pesto
Jun 5, 2011, 12:35 AM
Agree with Colemonkee; interesting points and good suggestions. I have great hopes for something interesting and perhaps even eye-catching given the people involved.

I would not focus excessively on the Capitol Building. The Lever and Seagrams buildings were pioneering icons as well, but are now surrounded by taller and more conspicuous buildings. Leaving sight-lines and a decent perspective is important, but deference is not necessary: how about complementing or exceeding it, instead?

Regarding Hollywood & Highland, let's remember the area. This is "Times Sq. West" not Park Ave. A building that would attract and hold people on a strip that includes the Chinese, Egyptian, El Capitan, and Ripley's needed something bold and flamboyant. There were still doubts about Hollywood's viability when it went up. Great architecture, no; but not bad for where it went and what it was supposed to do.

Chef Boyardee
Jun 11, 2011, 7:41 AM
New owner for blvd 6200 in hollywood.

http://www.latimes.com/business/la-fi-hollywood-project-20110610,0,7184924.story

Illithid Dude
Jun 19, 2011, 6:03 PM
I think we are immanent for a Wilshire Gayley groundbreaking .Just drove by the area yesterday, and they had the old Hollywood Video completely torn down, and it looked like they were going into site prep. I won't be surprised (but certainly happy) to see this one break ground over the next couple weeks.

http://la.curbed.com/uploads/2009.06.westwoodtower.jpg

This is the tower for those who are wondering, courtesy of Curbed LA.

user2468
Jun 19, 2011, 10:17 PM
Where is this site located? It looks like a pretty good building to construct.

JDRCRASH
Jun 19, 2011, 11:48 PM
^ Near UCLA, at the NW corner of Wilshire & Gayley.

Thanks for the update, Illithid.

pesto
Jun 20, 2011, 4:07 PM
I think they said this was just demo and the building would not be starting soon. But, as I recall, they had worked with Metro so as not to intefere with either location of the proposed Purple Line stations, so maybe they can begin while still deciding whether to go condo or hotel.

colemonkee
Jun 20, 2011, 11:06 PM
I would have a hard time seeing this moving forward anytime soon as a pure condo tower. It would have to have a significant hotel component to get financing anytime in the near term or medium term.

Illithid Dude
Jun 21, 2011, 12:10 AM
I would have a hard time seeing this moving forward anytime soon as a pure condo tower. It would have to have a significant hotel component to get financing anytime in the near term or medium term.

It won't be a condo tower. All hotel except for ten condos. So, yes, I would say that it has a significant hotel component.

Illithid Dude
Jun 21, 2011, 4:36 AM
http://la.curbed.com/archives/2011/06/westwoods_new_mormonfacing_building_mollys_in_hollywood_off_to_burger_joint_in_sky_1.php#more

In other news, Curbed LA is reporting that Molly's Burgers is closing June 30th. This hamburger shack has been sitting on the property in Hollywood that an attractive, glassy, 8 story office building is supposed to go on. So, more good news for Los Angeles Metro this week.

http://farm4.static.flickr.com/3041/2506497301_4801357c28_o.jpg

This is the building that will be going up.

Steve2726
Jul 14, 2011, 4:32 PM
Vacant lot in Koreatown is sold to developer
Don Hankey buys the land at 3670 Wilshire Blvd. from Shin Young America, a South Korea-based company.

http://www.latimes.com/business/realestate/la-fi-wilshire-lot-20110714,0,4957837.story

By Roger Vincent, Los Angeles Times

July 14, 2011

A prominent vacant lot on Wilshire Boulevard in Koreatown was bought for $21 million by a local developer who plans to build a retail and residential project and help create a public park.

Don Hankey bought the land at 3670 Wilshire Blvd. on Wednesday from Shin Young America, a South Korea-based company that bought the site for $45 million in the mid-2000s, real estate broker Jimmy Chai said.

Shin Young had dramatic plans for the 2.2-acre site east of Western Avenue calling for dual condominium and hotel towers as tall as 41 stories. The project was delayed by legal wrangling and halted after the condo market collapsed during the recession, said Chai, of Cushman & Wakefield.

Hankey plans to develop the half of the lot fronting on Wilshire Boulevard and sell the back half that faces 7th Street to the city's Community Redevelopment Agency, said Ed Johnson, a representative of City Councilman Herb Wesson.

Click link for more.

Curbed had a story on it a while back that shows the lot in question-

http://la.curbed.com/archives/2008/12/koreans_bail_out_put_3670_wilshire_up_for_sale.php

pesto
Jul 14, 2011, 6:18 PM
Good news. But I hate to ask: any renderings or discussion of height or style?

Illithid Dude
Jul 14, 2011, 10:06 PM
Good news. But I hate to ask: any renderings or discussion of height or style?

Normally, when this kind of specific announcement happens, a rendering is only days away.

edluva
Jul 15, 2011, 2:58 AM
is the cra going to have money to buy the land from hankey?

sopas ej
Jul 15, 2011, 3:05 AM
Will CRAs even exist in California anymore?

Illithid Dude
Jul 15, 2011, 7:41 AM
is the cra going to have money to buy the land from hankey?

Apparently, because they are about to close on the sale.

Illithid Dude
Jul 23, 2011, 9:28 AM
http://la.curbed.com/archives/2011/07/new_century_plaza_hotel_plan_trying_for_century_city_walkability.php

http://la.curbed.com/uploads/2011.07_centplaza.jpg

This is another one of those projects where there is nothing wrong. Two attractive tall building, a renovation of a historic building while still maintaining said buildings historic identity, and an added pedestrian focus to boot! This giant project will be a combination of hotel and condo, get rid of the driveway leading up to the current hotel, add a subway stop, and try to make that section of Century City more pedestrian friendly by adding retail along the base. Great, huh?

202_Cyclist
Jul 23, 2011, 2:56 PM
The Century City towers look attractive and this is exactly where new development should be concentrated-- within walking distance of transit.

It's pretty clear how to create jobs if this was as important a national priority as tax cuts for hedge-fund managers and oil companies. If we were serious about reducing unemployment and creating jobs, we'd create an infrastructure bank and leverage the initial capitalization to attract private dollars to build the infrastructure we need to keep our economy competitive. It's estimated that with a $10B initial capitalization from the fed govt, we could leverage $100B - $200B in private-sector investment.

http://commerce.senate.gov/public/index.cfm?p=Hearings&ContentRecord_id=d9c3dce8-6766-44db-8951-a298acdb84f9&ContentType_id=14f995b9-dfa5-407a-9d35-56cc7152a7ed&Group_id=b06c39af-e033-4cba-9221-de668ca1978a

If we then used this funding to invest in rail transit, we'd not only create jobs building the infrastructure but also with the tens of billions of dollars in real estate development around the stations.

JDRCRASH
Jul 23, 2011, 4:44 PM
^ That's just in LA. Think of what would happen if every major city in the US was decked out with rail... i'm thinking TRILLIONS in real estate transit-oriented development...

BrandonJXN
Jul 23, 2011, 6:52 PM
^ That's just in LA. Think of what would happen if every major city in the US was decked out with rail... i'm thinking TRILLIONS in real estate transit-oriented development...

Do you know how much a trillion dollars is?

pesto
Jul 24, 2011, 4:42 PM
http://la.curbed.com/archives/2011/07/new_century_plaza_hotel_plan_trying_for_century_city_walkability.php

http://la.curbed.com/uploads/2011.07_centplaza.jpg

This is another one of those projects where there is nothing wrong. Two attractive tall building, a renovation of a historic building while still maintaining said buildings historic identity, and an added pedestrian focus to boot! This giant project will be a combination of hotel and condo, get rid of the driveway leading up to the current hotel, add a subway stop, and try to make that section of Century City more pedestrian friendly by adding retail along the base. Great, huh?

This is about as good as can be hoped for in CC. Not exactly urban but suburban dense. CC has the potential to be what La Defense and Canary Wharf failed at: a very large integrated housing, retail and office complex that is walkable and not mostly cement. Time to ban all surface parking and get more kiosks and benches; open the shopping areas to the streets and plazas. The buildings should be done about the time the subway arrives.

sopas ej
Jul 24, 2011, 5:11 PM
This is about as good as can be hoped for in CC. Not exactly urban but suburban dense. CC has the potential to be what La Defense and Canary Wharf failed at: a very large integrated housing, retail and office complex that is walkable and not mostly cement. Time to ban all surface parking and get more kiosks and benches; open the shopping areas to the streets and plazas. The buildings should be done about the time the subway arrives.

I thought all surface parking was already banned in Century City since Century City was first created (all parking is underground or in parking structures); I've always felt that was one of the things that contributed to its sterility and unsettling vibe.

I agree what you said about this being as good as can be hoped for in Century City. By design, it is essentially a car-oriented suburban office/retail/housing complex. I've walked from the Intercontinental Hotel (I was at a wedding there) to the Century City shopping center and back (one way distance between the two is probably like a half mile or less); and though you're obviously not walking through a slum, and everything is nicely landscaped, etc., you still don't feel like you're walking through an urban large city; even on a weekend, the streets of Century City always feel like a ghost town-- you don't see anyone walking, and even Ave. of the Stars usually has very little vehicular traffic on it.

pesto
Jul 24, 2011, 6:34 PM
I agree on the surface parking; the only real surface parking is temporary on sites that are awaiting development, and maintenance and delivery trucks. What I really meant was get rid of the underused vacant lots and get more intensive use of open areas.

Probably not much hope south of Olympic at least for a while, but between Olympic and SM a fairly busy streetscape should be possible. The added towers and subway pedestrian traffic should be boosts.

JDRCRASH
Jul 24, 2011, 10:48 PM
Do you know how much a trillion dollars is?

400 LA Lives.

Which is indeed A LOT, but doable. Not all at once, of course. I'm talking about a decade or two following gargantuan investments in rail infrastructure in EVERY major US city.

Illithid Dude
Jul 28, 2011, 6:33 AM
http://i1113.photobucket.com/albums/k512/IllithidDude/ShoreHotel001.jpg?t=1311834317

This is an infill project going up on Ocean Blvd. I want to bring it up because this is a perfect example of how to do proper infill. This isn't some crappy McMansion trash, this is actually nice, high quality, modern architecture that is dense and urban. One of my favorite parts of this building is that there is little to no visible exterior stucco. None! As you may know, I hate stucco with a passion. To see something, anything, go up with no stucco is a real treat. Second, it is dense. Not only is it dense in height, but it uses up the entire lot as well, going right up on the lot line in every direction. And I do mean every direction, as this building goes through the entire block, and has entrances next to Santa Monica Place as well. Third, this is a green building, and will prob. be LEED certified. Always a good thing. Fourth, it is urban. Many hotels (which this is) tend to distance themselves from the urban fabric with driveways and glassy, imposing exteriors. This one has no driveway as far as I can tell, and ground floor retail all around. I can't really think of anything negative to say about this building. It is truly a step in the right direction, and a perfect model of how L.A. should build and be. Now, some more pictures.

http://i1113.photobucket.com/albums/k512/IllithidDude/ShoreHotel002.jpg

http://i1113.photobucket.com/albums/k512/IllithidDude/ShoreHotel004.jpg

http://i1113.photobucket.com/albums/k512/IllithidDude/ShoreHotel006.jpg

http://i1113.photobucket.com/albums/k512/IllithidDude/ShoreHotel009.jpg

This last picture was taken on the Santa Monica Place side.

LAsam
Jul 28, 2011, 5:26 PM
The demolition and subsequent reconstruction of Santa Monica Place was a brilliant move by the city of Santa Monica. The mall is now designed in a way that it complements the area arounds it and encourages development (like this hotel). I believe the Sears building which lies to the south of the mall is going to be the terminus for the Expo line, there's talk of capping the 10 freeway, and then the landscape architect who worked on NYC's highline is developing a new park south of the cap. Santa Monica is doing something right.

LosAngelesBeauty
Jul 29, 2011, 6:42 AM
The demolition and subsequent reconstruction of Santa Monica Place was a brilliant move by the city of Santa Monica. The mall is now designed in a way that it complements the area arounds it and encourages development (like this hotel). I believe the Sears building which lies to the south of the mall is going to be the terminus for the Expo line, there's talk of capping the 10 freeway, and then the landscape architect who worked on NYC's highline is developing a new park south of the cap. Santa Monica is doing something right.


I agree Santa Monica went from mediocre to one of the best mid-sized downtowns in California in about a decade. The new SM Place really helps establish that position for SM and the Expo Line will really help even more.

DowntownCharlieBrown
Aug 11, 2011, 7:10 AM
The Old Spaghetti Factory Tower proposal is back in the news.

http://http://www.latimes.com/business/la-fi-hollywood-revamp-20110810,0,5402778.story

Real estate deal points to Hollywood's comeback
By Roger Vincent, Los Angeles Times

August 10, 2011


CIM Group has purchased the former Old Spaghetti Factory building at Sunset Boulevard and Gordon Street. It plans to build the retail, office and residential project approved for previous owners.

The deal involves one of several long-delayed real estate projects that are getting back on track.

"Things ground to a halt in Hollywood over the last couple of years," said Leron Gubler, president of the Hollywood Chamber of Commerce. "This will be a chance to really get started again."

Among the other projects getting ready for their close-up: A large apartment complex called the Avenue — formerly the Madrone condominiums — is set to open later this year on La Brea Avenue near Hollywood Boulevard after a lengthy holdup.

Construction is set to being shortly on a $57-million, eight-story office building at Vine Street and Selma Avenue, a site long occupied by Molly's Hamburgers.

Work is also expected to begin soon on Blvd 6200, a 1,000-unit apartment and retail complex on Hollywood Boulevard between Argyle and El Centro avenues, close to the Pantages Theatre.

The white brick and stucco Old Spaghetti Factory building is best known from its last incarnation as a restaurant. But the structure has a past worthy of its place in the heart of Hollywood.

The building opened in 1924 as a dealership for Peerless brand automobiles. In the 1930s, it became home to the Max Reinhardt Workshop of Stage, Screen and Radio — an acting studio. Reinhardt was a famous theater and movie director remembered in part for his removal of the bowl structure from the Hollywood Bowl in order to stage a sprawling production of Shakespeare's "A Midsummer Night's Dream" starring his discovery, Olivia de Havilland.

Radio station KMPC turned the building into broadcast studios in 1944, when the neighborhood was known as Radio Row. Johnny Grant, who would become the unofficial mayor of Hollywood, was a KMPC disc jockey.

The station moved across the street in the late 1960s, yet continued to use the building for storage. In 1976, it was turned into the Old Spaghetti Factory, which served diners for decades. (The Portland, Ore.-based chain still operates about 40 locations in 14 states.)

Portland, Ore.-based Gerding Edlen Development in 2006 announced plans to build a $150-million mixed-use condominium project at the site, but the project was delayed by lawsuits and the recession, Gubler said.

The Gerding Edlen design now being pursued by CIM Group calls for preservation of the 1924 building, incorporating it into a complex with a 22-story apartment or condominium tower with 305 units. There would also be 40,000 square feet of office and retail space.

"The average vintage of office product in Hollywood is somewhat dated, so a newer modern office component to this development would be very well received by potential users," real estate broker Marc Renard of Cushman & Wakefield said.

There were several bidders for the property, said Renard, who with Carl Muhlstein represented the seller. "There was global interest in the site because of the location and the magnitude of the potential development opportunity."

The site is near Sunset Gower Studios, Sunset Bronson Studios and across the street from the planned Emerson College film and television training center.

Illithid Dude
Aug 11, 2011, 8:31 AM
Well, it's always nice to see new high rise infill in Los Angeles, especially infill that incorporates historic structures.

pesto
Aug 11, 2011, 4:29 PM
Great news to see things getting some action. As I recall Old Spaghetti Factory had some issues from local residents regarding shadows from the tower. I guess they were resolved.

I like the Old Spaghetti building but calling something "historic" in Hollywood because it had a radio station or movie connection would basically turn the whole place into a protected area.

Due to the lack of existing quality buildings along Selma, it has be potential for a complete make-over into an interesting urban street (classy low-rise arts and professional, plazas, outdoor dining, plaques re local history, nice sidewalks, etc.). But it can also go cheesy and touristy. I'll be curious to see how this develops.

Kingofthehill
Aug 11, 2011, 6:09 PM
i love what infill did to this block in hollywood:

http://farm7.static.flickr.com/6085/6033083222_6748372d2f_b.jpg

colemonkee
Aug 11, 2011, 6:26 PM
^ I like the density, but the building on the left leaves a lot to be desired architecturally.

Kingofthehill
Aug 11, 2011, 6:49 PM
Yeah, it's a bit of a sleeper. That said, it's 100x better than the Burger King that was previously there. The more I travel around, the more I realize the potential in LA. It wasn't until I left home a few times, that I realized most of LA's avenues and boulevards are comprised of stupid stuff like Fast Food restaurants, Drive-thru's, car washes, car dealerships, one-story buildings, etc. Given the dire situation of our retail strips, I think we are going to have to get used to such unattractive infill projects :( :)

LAofAnaheim
Aug 11, 2011, 7:36 PM
Yeah, it's a bit of a sleeper. That said, it's 100x better than the Burger King that was previously there. The more I travel around, the more I realize the potential in LA. It wasn't until I left home a few times, that I realized most of LA's avenues and boulevards are comprised of stupid stuff like Fast Food restaurants, Drive-thru's, car washes, car dealerships, one-story buildings, etc. Given the dire situation of our retail strips, I think we are going to have to get used to such unattractive infill projects :( :)

When I travel abroad, what sticks out to me is the ridiculously huge parking garages we have attached to nearly every building in Los Angeles compared to other cities, where you'll find 1 big one, but then it's blocks of apartments, offices, and retail with little to no parking. That's good use of resources. Our ridiculously high parking requirements works against in creating good urban areas. Fix the parking and then we'll get better infill. Guaranteed.

dktshb
Aug 11, 2011, 7:39 PM
I hope those Hollywood projects take off but give me dates... I am not buying "soon" especially with all the litigation that gets tied to every project.

The Avenue is almost near completion but I am sure the retail component is going to sit empty for a long, long time. Regardless, I plan on checking out the units and if I can get a decent one bedroom for $1700.00 I may just move there.

Illithid Dude
Aug 11, 2011, 9:25 PM
Yeah, it's a bit of a sleeper. That said, it's 100x better than the Burger King that was previously there. The more I travel around, the more I realize the potential in LA. It wasn't until I left home a few times, that I realized most of LA's avenues and boulevards are comprised of stupid stuff like Fast Food restaurants, Drive-thru's, car washes, car dealerships, one-story buildings, etc. Given the dire situation of our retail strips, I think we are going to have to get used to such unattractive infill projects :( :)

I've actually seen a good mix recently. For example, we have been seeing a lot of Mediterranean stucco poop-boxes go up recently. However, we are also seeing modern buildings which use high quality materials go up, like the hotel I posted in Santa Monica, and that building Caruso is putting up on La Cienaga. I don't think it is correct just to say, "all the buildings that will be built soon are going to be ugly" because that just isn't true.

Kingofthehill
Aug 11, 2011, 9:40 PM
I've actually seen a good mix recently. For example, we have been seeing a lot of Mediterranean stucco poop-boxes go up recently. However, we are also seeing modern buildings which use high quality materials go up, like the hotel I posted in Santa Monica, and that building Caruso is putting up on La Cienaga. I don't think it is correct just to say, "all the buildings that will be built soon are going to be ugly" because that just isn't true.

Of course it isn't true. And nowhere did I imply that we are only going to see ugly infill. Anybody familiar with my photos (i.e, most of the LA forumers) knows that I greatly appreciate, and have gone great lengths to photograph smart-looking, contemporary residences and multifamily apartments in LA. I will say, though, in areas lacking cache or the ability command high rents (Silverlake, Venice, Santa Monica, West Hollywood, etc are examples of places that do have the aforementioned cache/high rents, hence the nice infill), the quality of construction goes downhill very fast, as developers often work on small budgets, of which results in poorer quality construction and materials. Anyways, the best-looking new construction in LA isn't residential at all, lol; LAUSD and LAPD (among other civic agencies) are killing it right now in terms of modern design!

Illithid Dude
Aug 11, 2011, 10:12 PM
Of course it isn't true. And nowhere did I imply that we are only going to see ugly infill. Anybody familiar with my photos (i.e, most of the LA forumers) knows that I greatly appreciate, and have gone great lengths to photograph smart-looking, contemporary residences and multifamily apartments in LA. I will say, though, in areas lacking cache or that command high rents (Silverlake, Venice, Santa Monica, West Hollywood, etc), the quality of construction goes downhill very fast, as developers often work on small budgets, of which results in poorer quality construction. Anyways, the best-looking new construction in LA isn't residential at all, lol; LAUSD and LAPD (among other civic agencies) are killing it right now in terms of modern design!

I don't know about LAUSD, but I agree that, in general, civic design right now is amazing. And I agree about what you said concerning design in residential, now that you've clarified yourself. For the most part, new stuff going up in the less desirable neighborhoods is ugly as poop. Though, of course, there are exceptions to that rule. Some of the non HG Palmer stuff going up in City West is generally nice.

dktshb
Aug 13, 2011, 3:02 AM
Of course it isn't true. And nowhere did I imply that we are only going to see ugly infill. Anybody familiar with my photos (i.e, most of the LA forumers) knows that I greatly appreciate, and have gone great lengths to photograph smart-looking, contemporary residences and multifamily apartments in LA. I will say, though, in areas lacking cache or the ability command high rents (Silverlake, Venice, Santa Monica, West Hollywood, etc are examples of places that do have the aforementioned cache/high rents, hence the nice infill), the quality of construction goes downhill very fast, as developers often work on small budgets, of which results in poorer quality construction and materials. Anyways, the best-looking new construction in LA isn't residential at all, lol; LAUSD and LAPD (among other civic agencies) are killing it right now in terms of modern design!

Yes, you represent LA better than any of the LA forumers. If people want to see LA and see new projects your threads are where to go.

What strikes me as a little odd is all the nice infill that has gone up in the San Fernando Valley. Sure there is bad there too but a lot of the infill south of the 101 and in the Toluca Lake area is exceptional. A lot nicer the the stuff that has been going up in most the LA Basin.

Illithid Dude
Aug 14, 2011, 8:09 AM
i love what infill did to this block in hollywood:

http://farm7.static.flickr.com/6085/6033083222_6748372d2f_b.jpg

After discussing the architectural traits of these buildings, I feel like I need to go see them in person. Out of all the areas in Los Angeles, Hollywood is where I have explored least (well, all the major urban areas at least). After seeing so many photos of the new development, I feel like I should change that. So, I figure, these pictures buildings are as good a place to start as any. Where are these buildings located?

colemonkee
Aug 14, 2011, 4:41 PM
A block from Hollywood and Highland, if I'm not mistaken. The building on the left is The Jefferson, which is right across Highland from Hollywood & Highland, just north of Hollywood. That picture is on the backside of the building, so the next block. So from downtown you could take the Red Line and be right there.

DistrictDirt
Aug 15, 2011, 6:26 PM
I happened to be in Santa Monica this past weekend so I snapped a couple of pics of that new Ocean Blvd project. I'm looking forward to seeing what they do with that courtyard.

http://i.imgur.com/IIdVF.jpg

http://i.imgur.com/ZR0JY.jpg