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Equity Office Daily Brief: January 4, 2016

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Daily Brief

January 04, 2016

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La Cañada officials consider Sports Chalet's headquarters as a potential buy

Los Angeles Times

 

With City Hall quarters growing increasingly close, La Cañada officials seem to be eyeing available real estate in search of a property that could accommodate a relocation, or at least handle the personnel overflows of more populous departments. An agenda for a...

 


11 New Projects That Will Hit Downtown in 2016

Los Angeles Downtown News

 

On the Rise: One of the most anticipated projects to open in 2016 will be Ten50, the 25-story condominium building at 1050 S. Grand Ave. in South Park. It is the first Downtown project from San Francisco-based Trumark Urban, and is...

 


California cranks out new businesses and jobs despite criticism

Los Angeles Times

 

California's business climate has been a perpetual target of ridicule. Out-of-state politicians and critics of the state's regulations have delighted in depicting California as an inhospitable place to do business. The Golden State perennially ranks at the bottom of national surveys gauging business...

 



BLOG & ONLINE NEWS

 

Residents Move to Stop Massive Developments

GlobeSt.com

 

LOS ANGELES—The Los Angeles community may not be as excited about the development activity as some developers have led us to believe. The Coalition to Preserve L.A., led by Michael Weinstein of the AIDS Healthcare Foundation, is looking to push through...

 


Small Property Breaks Big Record

GlobeSt.com

 

SANTA ANA, CA—A small 6-unit multifamily property has broken the price-per-square-foot record in Santa Ana, CA. A private seller sold the property, which is located at 425 S. Birch Street, for $306 per square foot. The property is made up of...

 


Rezoning Plan Helps Fuel Development

GlobeSt.com

 

LONG BEACH—Downtown Los Angeles might be the biggest renaissance in the Los Angeles market, but it certainly isn’t the only. Downtown Long Beach is seeing an influx of smart money. For Downtown Los Angeles, the adaptive reuse ordinance was the catalyst...

 


Striking New Look for Martin Expo Town Center

Urbanize LA

 

Time to start 2016 with a bang. Last week, a final environmental impact report published by the Los Angeles Department of City Planning (LADCP) unveiled a new look for Martin Expo Town Center, a mixed-use complex spurred by Metro's Expo Line. The project,...

 

FULL TEXT


La Cañada officials consider Sports Chalet's headquarters as a potential buy

Los Angeles Times

 

With City Hall quarters growing increasingly close, La Cañada officials seem to be eyeing available real estate in search of a property that could accommodate a relocation, or at least handle the personnel overflows of more populous departments.

An agenda for a Dec. 15 closed session meeting of the La Cañada Flintridge City Council indicated City Manager Mark Alexander is currently engaged in talks with La Cañada Properties, Inc., regarding possible prices and terms of payment for 1 Sport Chalet Drive, which has served as Sport Chalet headquarters since 2002.

While Alexander stated in an email last week he was not at liberty to discuss the matter, he said the current City Hall building, located at 1327 Foothill Blvd., has been owned by the city for at least the past 15 years and occupied by city staff even longer.

Mayor Dave Spence said in an interview last week city officials had been contacted by a representative of La Cañada Properties and told the space was being put up for sale. Officials have sought appraisals for both the Sport Chalet building and the current City Hall building, he added.

"The city is still evaluating what would be the most financially prudent view," Spence said. "We're trying to get a handle on the amount of money we could get for the current City Hall if we did move the location."

The property on which Sport Chalet's corporate office sits includes the 27,915 square-foot building at 1 Sport Chalet Drive, as well as a 3,038 square-foot building at 827 Houseman St., currently being leased by the Foothill Progressive Montessori School through 2024.

According to Glendale commercial real estate broker Stevenson Real Estate Services, which has the property listed online for sale or for lease, the first floor of the corporate office building can be leased for the monthly rate of $2.30 per square foot. The entire lot is listed as available for purchase for a total of $14.4 million.

Randy Stevenson said in an interview Tuesday Sport Chalet's corporate headquarters currently occupies the building's second floor. While the option to lease the bottom floor has been available since September, the owners decided to also list the property for sale about a month ago. Stevenson confirmed La Cañada city officials expressed some interest in the space some months back.

"They toured the building," he said. "We coordinated a tour, got the building accessible and walked them through."

Spence said he believed the estimate given the city for an undetermined portion of the property was in the neighborhood of about $11 million.

In 2014, the locally founded and independently operated Sport Chalet was bought by Connecticut-based Vestis Retail Group, which owns East Coast sports retailers Bob's Stores and Eastern Mountain Sports. At the time of the sale, Vestis announced Sport Chalet chief executive Craig Levra would remain in that position in the La Cañada corporate office for the foreseeable future.

In May of this year, Levra left the company and is now actively involved in the boards of a database and a tech retail company. It's unclear whether Vestis plans to move all Sport Chalet offices elsewhere. Representatives from the company did not return multiple calls.

Meanwhile, the Sport Chalet site is not the only option being considered to reduce overcrowding at City Hall. Spence said city officials were recently advised a neighboring office building adjacent to Memorial Park may soon be available for purchase.

While the space would not likely accommodate all the city's departments, the mayor said it could provide a means for housing employees from some of the city's more crowded work spaces.

"We are trying to figure out how we can relieve the congestion of our employees," Spence said. "These two buildings are up for sale, so we're just trying to evaluate what is the best move."

-Sara Cardine, sara.cardine@latimes.com

11 New Projects That Will Hit Downtown in 2016

Los Angeles Downtown News

 

On the Rise: One of the most anticipated projects to open in 2016 will be Ten50, the 25-story condominium building at 1050 S. Grand Ave. in South Park. It is the first Downtown project from San Francisco-based Trumark Urban, and is slated to debut in October. Ten50 will deliver the first batch of new-construction condos to hit the market in years, and the tower will feature 151 one- and two-bedroom residences, with amenities such as a pool deck, a fully stocked gym and a screening room. The $100 million project was initially broached before the recession and stalled. Trumark Urban bought it with entitlements in June 2014.

It’s Blossom Plaza, Jake: Chinatown has been largely quiet on the residential development front, save for one massive, game-changing project: Blossom Plaza. The five-story complex from developer Forest City will bring 237 studio to three-bedroom apartments to a key stretch of Broadway next to the Metro Gold Line station, with 53 of the residences set aside for low-income individuals and families. The $100 million project will also feature 19,000 square feet of retail space and a 17,000-square-foot public plaza and walkway that connects the Gold Line station to Broadway. The project is on track to finish by early summer, according to Forest City.

Mega Move: The $1 billion Metropolis mega-project just north of L.A. Live continues to rise, and its first phase, consisting of an 18-story Hotel Indigo and a 38-floor condominium tower, is scheduled to open by the end of the year. Metropolis will add major residential and retail life to a quiet corner of Downtown, bringing more than 70,000 square feet of shopping and restaurant space to two levels off Francisco Street. The first phase condos are already 65% sold, according to developer Greenland U.S.A. The project will also play a vital role by helping activate the stretch of western Downtown between L.A. Live and the Financial District. A second phase, consisting of 40- and 56-story condo towers, is slated to debut in 2018. Condo prices start at $500,000 and go to $2 million-plus.

DTLA - In the years after the recession, lending standards loosened and developers began proposing plans for major Downtown projects. Although some of those arrived last year, the biggest wave is yet to come.

In 2016, Downtown Los Angeles will welcome a number of housing projects, including several for-sale developments. The residences will be joined by cultural attractions and business hubs. Here are 11 of the biggest additions coming to Downtown this year.

From the Ashes: The second phase of developer Geoff Palmer’s Da Vinci apartment complex, at Fremont Avenue and Temple Street near the interchange for the 110 and 101 freeways, was destroyed in an epic inferno in December 2014. The project has been completely reframed and will be finished around May 2016. It will join the first phase of Da Vinci (north of Temple Street) to offer a combined 526 apartments. Like many of Palmer’s projects, the Da Vinci features a faux-Mediterranean look and is packed with amenities including a pool deck, BBQ area, gym and more.

Sky High: Singapore-based OUE is dropping $100 million on an upgrade of U.S. Bank Tower, with $60 million of that dedicated to lobby improvements and the creation of a 69th-floor observation deck, a 70th-floor event space and a 71st-floor restaurant. Skyspace L.A., as it’s called, is designed to bring tourists and locals alike to the top of Downtown’s most iconic tower. Admission is expected to be $25. Visitors will also be able to explore a 54th-floor tech-driven exhibit that shows off the city’s topography and other features. Meanwhile, OUE is pushing to bring new office tenants into U.S. Bank Tower. Occupancy has already risen from 50% when OUE acquired the structure in 2013 to around 75%.

On the Cutting Edge: The Los Angeles Cleantech Incubator has been building out its shiny new La Kretz Innovation Campus in the Arts District, and is nearing the finish line. The 60,000-square-foot clean technology project and business incubator at 525 S. Hewitt St., right near Urth Caffe, will serve as a home for start-ups, offering flexible office space, a prototyping workshop, a 100-person training center, conference rooms and the city Department of Water and Power’s Energy Efficiency Customer Engagement Center. The La Kretz campus will include a small park with a water feature, grass and tables. It is expected to open early this year.

Seventh Street is Bloc’d: Many Downtowners were eagerly awaiting the debut of The Bloc before the end of 2015, but as often happens with big projects, its opening was pushed. The $180 million redevelopment of Macy’s Plaza, from developer the Ratkovich Company, is now moving toward a summer 2016 debut, according to a project representative. The most anticipated tenant is a nine-screen Alamo Drafthouse movie theater. Other additions will include men’s boutique Wingtip and Davio’s Northern Italian Steakhouse. Also in the works is an underground connection to the Seventh Street Metro Station across the street.

Justice Is Served: The Federal Courthouse at First Street and Broadway looks pretty much complete, with the last pieces of its serrated glass facade having been installed late last year. Workers are now hustling to build out the interior, which will feature 24 courtrooms, 32 judges’ chambers and offices for the U.S. Marshal’s Service and the General Services Administration. All told, the $323 million Civic Center project has 600,000 square feet of space. It is gunning for LEED Platinum status thanks to its extensive green infrastructure elements. Those include the jagged façade, which will significantly cut solar heat gain. The Federal Courthouse is expected to open in the fall. 

The Italian Job: The Italian American Museum, in the 1908 Italian Hall at 125 Paseo de Plaza near Olvera Street, has seemingly been under construction forever. Now, apparently, it is in the home stretch, with workers installing special lighting and putting together the opening exhibits. It is expected to open early this year and will feature rare photos, maps, artifacts and documents highlighting the history and legacy of Italian Americans in Los Angeles. The build-out has involved restoring the original facade and detailing. In October, the museum secured a 40-year lease with the city.

The Art of the Matter: The Downtown Los Angeles art scene has been booming, with the arrival of important galleries and The Broad museum. The momentum will continue March 13, when the 100,000-square-foot Hauser, Wirth & Schimmel opens in a collection of late 19th and early 20th century buildings. The project, which features former MOCA Chief Curator Paul Schimmel, will revive a collection of Arts District structures that have been largely vacant for a half century. The opening show in the space at 901 E. Third St. is titled Revolution in the Making: Abstract Sculpture by Women, 1947-2016, and will hold nearly 100 works by 34 women, including Louise Bourgeois, Claire Falkenstein, Eva Hesse and Yayoi Kusama. Although the Arts District is changing as investors flock to the area, the complex ensures that the community will maintain some semblance of artistry.

Bountiful Buses: Can a bus maintenance facility grab your attention? When it’s the Division 13 Bus Maintenance and Operations Facility, it can. The $120 million Metropolitan Transportation Authority project at the northeast corner of Vignes Street and Cesar Chavez Avenue has a shockingly contemporary design. A grand opening is expected early this year for the facility that can hold 200 CNG (compressed natural gas) buses. With elements such as a full green roof and an underground 250,000-gallon water retention tank (it will collect rainwater and use it to wash buses), the project is on track to achieve Leadership in Energy & Environmental Design (LEED) Gold certification. So yes, there is a beauty in buses.

-eddie@downtownnews.com

California cranks out new businesses and jobs despite criticism

Los Angeles Times

 

California's business climate has been a perpetual target of ridicule.

Out-of-state politicians and critics of the state's regulations have delighted in depicting California as an inhospitable place to do business.

The Golden State perennially ranks at the bottom of national surveys gauging business friendliness. Chief Executive magazine recently called it a "deeply troubled" state, where companies are so over-regulated that "most cannot afford to do business."

But a new study drawing on more than three decades' worth of census business-formation data tells quite a different story.

California has spawned new businesses at one of the fastest rates in the nation over the last decade, and faster than the U.S. economy overall, the report found. The state is also a leader in job creation tied to those new businesses: In 2013, California added jobs from newly established businesses faster than all but four other states.

"Does this mean California is business-friendly? Of course not," said Christopher Thornberg, founding partner of Beacon Economics, who helped prepare the study. "It means that being 'business friendly' is not the be-all and end-all of economic development."

Although critics tend to seize on high-profile anecdotes such as Toyota Motor Co. or Occidental Petroleum Corp. moving their U.S. headquarters from California to Texas, those departures are not indicative of larger trends in a $2.3-trillion state economy.

The study from Beacon and Next 10, a California public policy research group, looked at annual census data going back to 1976. The numbers provide a state-by-state and national look at the number of business establishments that open or close in any given year, along with jobs tied to those companies.

The rate of business formation (and business closure) in California has slowed over the last decade, but that mirrors a similar decline for the U.S. overall.

For each year since 1976, California's pace of new business creation has been faster than the U.S. rate, and often faster than Texas'.

The study adds to existing contrarian data about the state's business climate.

Less than 1% of all businesses that disappeared in California in 2013 were due to out-of-state relocations, according to data from Youreconomy.org, which tracks business dynamics across the country. That's in line with the average for all states.

And an earlier Beacon analysis of census migration data showed that, despite California's comparatively high income tax rates, more people making in excess of $100,000 a year moved to California from other states from 2007 to 2013 than those who left.

Moreover, research has shown that "business climate" rankings — which typically look at a state's corporate taxes and regulatory environment — have less to do with overall economic performance than factors such as favorable weather, geography or being home to a diverse mix of industries. That gives California, with its highly skilled workforce and strategic location on the Pacific Rim, a natural advantage over many other parts of the country.

A 2011 study from the Public Policy Institute of California found that the political debate over business friendliness probably "overemphasizes the role of policy and policymakers in determining their states' economic performance."

"The situation in California is much more nuanced than just rating the state's business climate based on taxes," said F. Noel Perry, founder of Next 10. "Notwithstanding those higher tax rates, there's many many thousands of people in California who think they can start a business from scratch and be successful at it."

Still, critics of the state's business climate say the rapid pace of new business creation masks the challenges for long-tenured companies operating in an expensive state.

"Certainly you have the talent here and you have the investor capital, so start-ups are going to blossom here more than the rest of the country," said Allan Zaremberg, president and chief executive of the California Chamber of Commerce. "Once you get beyond that, if you have an IPO, you have to be able to perform. Mature industries are always looking at their costs: Can my employees afford to live here? Can I afford the rent?"

Development consultant Larry Kosmont said those added costs, along with the uncertainties around when permits or licenses may get approved, begin to wear away at companies looking to expand.

"No company deliberately walks away from an economy that is the seventh largest in the world, with 38 to 39 million people. That's nutty," said Kosmont, whose firm conducts surveys on the cost of doing business in the state.

Many companies will choose to keep their highly skilled workers in California, he said. But they may move back-office operations such as call centers or technical support to more affordable parts of the country, leaving fewer job opportunities for mid-tier workers.

"We're so successful at attracting these high-level start-ups," Kosmont said. "But we tend to ignore the erosion that's going on beneath the sheets."

Thornberg said the data in no way mean California is a perfect place to do business. Government bureaucracy and increasingly unaffordable housing pose real headaches. But such challenges are only part of the equation, he said.

"When you actually look at the data," he said, "you'll find that as kooky as California is, it's not a state that's underperforming."

Stan Dubyn has found success in the state. He has started two companies in California's aerospace industry over the last 25 years, and he's continuing to expand. Millennium Space Systems, the company he founded in 2001, builds satellites for customers such as the U.S. military and NASA.

The access to research institutions such as Caltech, USC and UCLA and the cluster of engineering talent in Southern California make it an obvious place for a company like his to thrive, he said. His company headquarters in El Segundo is just across the street from the Los Angeles Air Force Base.

"I interview people all the time who can't wait to move from Michigan or Wisconsin or Iowa," he said. "It's a vibrant place for the high-tech and aerospace industry. The California dream still lives here."

Dubyn said he's aware of the relocation incentives offered by other states such as Texas or Nevada. His company received a package of about $360,000 in sales tax incentives from California this month.

But ultimately, he said, no amount of tax incentives could outweigh the benefits of being close to a dense network of customers, suppliers and potential employees.

"We have a very high-tech workforce, people with bachelor's, master's, PhD's," Dubyn said. "It's hard to get people to relocate, and it's expensive for the company. I would basically have to reformulate the company."

-chris.kirkham@latimes.com

Residents Move to Stop Massive Developments

GlobeSt.com

 

LOS ANGELES—The Los Angeles community may not be as excited about the development activity as some developers have led us to believe. The Coalition to Preserve L.A., led by Michael Weinstein of the AIDS Healthcare Foundation, is looking to push through the Neighborhood Integrity Initiative, a ballot measure that would require developers to stick to the general plan without exemption. According to a poll conducted earlier this month, 72% of Los Angeles residents would support such a poll.

“In the Hollywood area where our offices are headquartered, there are nine projects with zoning exemptions and a lot of these are mega developments, but there are also issues in Koreatown, Miracle Mile, Downtown and across the city,” Weinstein tells GlobeSt.com. “It is really difficult for individual community groups to challenge these projects because there are so many of them and they are so outgunned by developers. We felt the need to be a citywide solution. The whole idea of plot zoning is an oxymoron. The whole idea of zoning is that you have a zone, not that each individual plot has its own rules. The things that make city wonderful is that there is a character and a fabric of communities rather than helter skelter development.”

Weinstein notes that the biggest single issue is the congestion and traffic issues that result from these major developments. “People are horrified by the degree of traffic congestion and how these developments are changing the character of the community,” he says. “We are going to put up billboards that say ‘Stop Manhattanwood.’ This is not the California lifestyle that people were seeking when they moved here.”

While the campaign has been focused in the group’s Hollywood home base, Weinstein says that this is a citywide effort. “We are still in the process of doing a lot of the grassroots organizing. Most of the mega projects that have been stopped are here in Hollywood, like the Millennium project and the Sunset Gordon project; the Target, but it certainly applies to other areas of the city.” However, he is quick to explain that the coalition isn’t anti-development, only against the exceptions and plot zoning. “All we are asking for is that they stick to the general plan, which would not prevent a lot of projects that don’t require exceptions,” he adds.

-Kelsi Maree Borland

Small Property Breaks Big Record

GlobeSt.com

 

SANTA ANA, CA—A small 6-unit multifamily property has broken the price-per-square-foot record in Santa Ana, CA. A private seller sold the property, which is located at 425 S. Birch Street, for $306 per square foot. The property is made up of one-bedroom units and was renovated in 2013. Investment Property Group represented the seller in the transaction. The name of the buyer was not disclosed.

SALES

MISSION VIEJO, CA—Bixby Land Co. has purchased the Mission Heritage Medical Center for $15.6 million from New York Life Real Estate Investors. The four-story office building is 59% leased, but in an office market with 92% office occupancies. Bixby plans to invest an additional $5 million to improve the property and drive occupancy. CBRE’s Kevin Shannon, Paul Jones and Blake Bokosky represented New York Life in the transaction.

KENT, WA—Terreno Realty Corp. has acquired a 158,000-square-foot industrial building in Kent, WA, for $14.9 million from an unnamed buyer. The investor purchased the property at a 6% cap rate. Located at 20280 84th Avenue South, the property sits on 8.2 acres and has 22 dock-high loading positions, parking for 181 cars and is 100% occupied.

RILATO, CA—New York Life Real Estate Investors has acquired a 609,888-square-foot industrial facility in Rialto, CA, from an undisclosed seller. The sales price of the property was also not disclosed, but the investor purchased it with its Madison Core Property Fund. Located at 2415 North Locust, the new property was developed by CapRock Partners and will continue to be managed by the developer. 

LEASES

PASADENA, CA—ChapCare signed a 6,000-square-foot lease deal in a retail center. The ACA-funded clinic will occupy a former Anna’s Linens store. Jason Ehrenpreis and Geoff Grossman of CBM represented the landlord in the transaction.

SAN DIEGO, CA—Priority Moving has signed a five-year lease with Clarion Partners for a 35,250-square-foot space at 12270 World Trade Drive in the Caramel Mountain Ranch submarket. CBRE’s Bill Dolan and Chris Pascale represented the landlord, while Nicole Winters of JLL represented Priority Moving.

FINANCING

DENVER, CO—JCR Capital has funded four bridge loans totaling $30.15 million. The four transactions include $12 million for the recapitalization of two mixed-use buildings in Santa Monica, where the borrower plans to redevelop the properties into a 271-room mixed-use hotel; $8.5 million for the acquisition of a 96,862-square-foot retail property located in Littleton, CO; $5 million for the acquisition of Aquia Towne Center, a 34,720-square-foot shopping center on a 27.1-acre site in Stafford, VA, where the borrower plans to develop the unused portion of the property; $4.65 million for the acquisition of a portfolio of three Colorado retail properties.  

GREENWOOD VILLAGE, CO—Century Communities has expanded its unsecured credit facility to $300 million along with an accordion feature that will allow it to further expand up to $400 million. The credit facility will have an interest rate at a LIBOR plus a spread of 2.75% to 3.25%.

DEVELOPMENT

SAN DIEGO, CA—C.W. Driver has completed the $26 million renovation of the East Nursing Unit at Sharp Grossmont Hospital. The taxpayer-funded project was approved in 2006 and included construction of the new 71,000-saure-foot nursing unit.

-Kelsi Maree Borland

Rezoning Plan Helps Fuel Development

GlobeSt.com

 

LONG BEACH—Downtown Los Angeles might be the biggest renaissance in the Los Angeles market, but it certainly isn’t the only. Downtown Long Beach is seeing an influx of smart money. For Downtown Los Angeles, the adaptive reuse ordinance was the catalyst for much of the growth in that market. In Downtown Long Beach, the new Downtown Plan, which decreases parking requirements and increases the possibility for density has fueled growth in a similar way, according to Jeff Coburn and Greg Gill of Lee & Associates Long Beach office.

“The city passed a very smart, very pro business Downtown Zoning plan, and it has worked so well that they are actually pushing is up to the 405 freeway and Atlantic and Long Beach Blvd., to create a high density corridor up there,” Gill tells GlobeSt.com. “That is really important.” Gill notes that the plan was first applied to the Promenade, and has been incredibly successful. “The Promenade used to be a north-south street, but they made it a pedestrian access street, and what has happened is that it has turned out to be a super cool place to be,” he adds. 

When asked if the new downtown zoning plan was a similar catalyst as the adaptive reuse ordinance in Downtown Los Angeles, Coburn and Gills agreed that it is. “The Downtown Plan in Downtown Long Beach was really a big catalyst,” Coburn, a principal in Lee & Associates Long Beach office, tells GlobeSt.com. “For them putting that is was a big move and really opened the door for a lot of stuff. That really helped bring new development and energy to Downtown Long Beach.”

The new Downtown Plan, however, isn’t the only factor attracting developers. The government—from the mayor’s office to the city staff—is supporting development and growth in the market. “Robert Garcia, the Mayor of Long Beach is very pro development,” adds Coburn. “The things that are happening were in Robert’s vision when he came into office. HE has had think-tank meetings with owners and developers, both on the residential and the commercial side to come in a figure out how to make downtown a better place. The city staff is doing everything that they can, and they are making it so easy. Some of my clients are saying that they roll out the red carpet. It is so easy. It is a well-oiled machine.”

-Kelsi Maree Borland

Striking New Look for Martin Expo Town Center

Urbanize LA

 

Time to start 2016 with a bang.

Last week, a final environmental impact report published by the Los Angeles Department of City Planning (LADCP) unveiled a new look for Martin Expo Town Center, a mixed-use complex spurred by Metro's Expo Line.

The project, which is being developed by the family behind the Martin Automotive Group, would replace the company's longtime Cadillac and GMC dealership at the northwest corner of Olympic Boulevard and Bundy Drive.

The redesign, crafted by global architecture firm Gensler, calls for an approximately 4.76-acre development with low-rise and mid-rise buildings, as well as a 10,000-square-foot pedestrian plaza with landscaping, water elements and outdoor seating.

At the northern edge of the property, the dealership's current automobile service center would be demolished to make way for a seven-story structure featuring either rental apartments or for-sale condominiums.  Plans call for 516 residential units on the building's upper floors, 8,000 square feet of amenities and a combined 81,000 square feet of ground-floor commercial space for retail, grocery and restaurant uses.

The southern portion of the development site, currently home to the Martin Cadillac showroom, would be redeveloped with a 10-story, 160-foot tower featuring approximately of 191,500 square feet of office space on its upper levels and 26,500 square feet of office and retail space on its ground floor.

Martin Expo Town Center would provide substantial parking accommodations in a three-level underground garage spanning across the property.  The number of vehicle stalls would vary between 1,451 and 1,876, depending on whether the project's residential component is developed as rental apartments of for-sale units.

Both figures represent reduced parking requirements through the city's bicycle parking ordinance and a 10% transit credit applied to commercial uses.

Prior LADCP records indicated that construction of the mixed-use complex would occur over 32 months, ending in 2018.  However, it is unclear if this timeline represents the current plan for the project.

Martin Expo Town Center is one of a handful of large developments planned around stations on the Expo Line, including multi-use projects from Lowe Enterprises and Carmel Partners.

-Steven Sharp

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