Thursday, October 27, 2016

Shepard Fairey-adjacent apartments planned for Echo Park property

Empty lot will become part of 27-unit apartment complex. Shepard Fairey studio at far left

Fans of Shepard Fairey might want to get on the waiting list for a 27-unit apartment complex that will rise a few doors away from the artist’s Echo Park studio, gallery and office. Sunset Space Provision LLC has pulled permits with the city to build the Sunset Boulevard apartments and underground parking garage on approximately 13,000-square feet of property at 1313-1315 Sunset Boulevard, which consists of an empty lot and a small 1921 house, which would be demolished for the project located immediately east of Fairey’s brick  building at Sunset and Elysian Park Avenue.  Those permits have yet to be approved, however, according to online records.

The Eastsider could not find out who’s behind Sunset Space Provision, which paid about $1.3 million for the land last year. But this stretch of Sunset Boulevard between Echo Park and downtown has recently attracted new businesses, historic landmark recognition and development.

In addition, less than three blocks away from the new apartment complex, developer Linear City is transforming a seven-story office building once occupied by the Metropolitan Water District into 90 apartments.

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  1. your conscience @ ep

    I’m really excited about the prospects of a new apartment complex moving into Echo Park! I look forward to a more diverse Echo Park than the one on the past. Cheers to development!

  2. Do we really need more apartment complexes? Complexes are a blight on this community. They’re designed with no attention to aesthetics, pack in more people than unnecessary and cause traffic levels to increase.

    Why does an old home need to be demolished for this? Not everything new is good. We’ve already lost so much history on the Eastside due to development. We need to stop tearing down old structures and instead encourage developers to practice historic renovation, preservation and adaptive reuse. Without that, Echo Park will start to look like West Hollywood in less than a decade.

    • Ted The Driving Instructor

      This stretch of Sunset is a dump, you’d prefer it in its current shambolic state than what future investment promises?

      • Exactly. The area is very depressed right now and this development, if done right, can be a big plus for the neighborhood. As long as it doesnt look anything like the beige monstrosity thats always tagged up.

      • We just need developers to come in with BETTER investment ideas. Slapping a pre-fab apartment complex where every unit will have granite counters and carpeting does nothing to promote or preserve the unique architectural qualities of the area.

        You want an 1 bedroom apartment that costs $2500/month and looks like everyone else’s apartment? I suggest you move to Santa Monica.

  3. House or storefronts to be demolished?

  4. The fact that Shepard Fairey’s studio is across has no relevance to the story. Are you just fishing for hits?

  5. The house being demolished has been on Redfin for a while and is beyond repair. There is no immediate loss with its demise. And the purpose of apartment buildings is that of necessity: to house human beings, to give them a roof over their heads. The building of new apartments helps keep prices down, as the market works on supply versus demand principles. Do you think everyone should live in a detached single-family home? Not everyone can nor wants to afford that.

    • I don’t recall anything in this article about this development being designed as affordable housing for those who can’t afford to live in detached family homes(?). In fact, I’m certain that the primary motivation for this development is its potential for charging the highest rents possible and perhaps even the equivalent of a house payment in a less desireable neighborhood. Btw, never mind the condemned home. I’m becoming sentimental for the vacant lots and urban green spaces that have become an increasing rarity in N.E.L.A.

      • Yes. The 2nd largest city in the nation should strive to be a verdant farmland to satisfy your sentimentality. And affordable housing? Yes, let’s try to remain a ghetto for as long as possible. Take your social engineering elsewhere.

      • The highest rents the market will bear for apartments is lower than the highest rents the market will bear for a detached home. While they may not be “affordable”, they at least will be within range of far more people, and many people will be able to take advantage of them, rather than just one family.

        • That conclusion is only true if these apartments will be renting for between $1,200 and $1,500, which is what I rent my detached home units for. Otherwise, they will NOT be within the range of working families who are responsible for the “ghetto” environment that is the urban appeal of this community in the first place, but Nooo. Let’s discourage families from moving here to accommodate the pretentious elite who only want to pretend they live in a “ghetto”. Anyway, I’m no lightweight and your sarcastic response has inspired me to diligently hold our elected officials accountable for the decline in the quality of life that these developments represent in neighborhoods that are already densely populated . . . “Thanks”.

          • Silver Lake resident

            Thanks for pointing our the very racially divisive and offensive language that all these “pro-developer” comments are spewing out.

            To the people who think Echo Park and its residents who desperately need affordable housing: Why the hell did you move here in the first place? To gain hipster cred? Or because you actually care about the unique quality of live the Eastside provides?

            I might be labeled as a “hipster” to strangers, but I moved to SL several years ago not because I wanted to be “cool,” but because I love how Silver Lake and Echo Park were/are (?) drastically different than the rest of LA. Instead of massive shopping centers with chain restaurants and stores, there are locally-owned boutiques and decades-old restaurants. Instead of apartment complexes with 200 units that all look the same, covered in stainless appliances and carpeting, there are historic homes and duplexes with amazing architectural features. Instead of bleached blonde Beverly Hills types driving expensive cars, the community is made up of a mix of people from all walks of life — rich, poor; white, Latino; younger new transplants and longtime residents.

            If you want homogeny and a less “ghetto” environment, there’s plenty of apartments for rent in WeHo or Santa Monica.

  6. It will probably be ugly. Which is unfortunate. Because in theory, I am in favor of more people being able to live in Echo Park, and Sunset Boulevard is already zoned (and appropriate) for higher density residential. I do like the 70s (?) condos (?) with the cantilevered carports up the hill at the end of Innes Steet though. Could they possibly make something like that? I really hope they don’t draw “inspiration” from the ugly stucco masses just across the street. Or put “craftsman” doodads on on some HardiPlank sided box and call it “contextual” to the neighborhood.

  7. See the stretch of apartments behind the proposed development?
    On the other side of the old house is a tire business which also hosts a very large billboard (great view for apartment dwellers). The street next to the tire place is Innes…take a look at this:
    and this is the street view:

    The proposed development will add to the apartment mass on that hill and a tire business isn’t the most profitable, so I think 5, 10 years that property will be sold for more apartments…ugly apartments metastasizing across the landscape.

    I find the Shepard Fairey reference interesting not as a headline grabber but because his work is quite the opposite of what apartment builders are about.
    His work calls out the individual while apartments are anonymous and depersonalizing. Fairey’s place, even if you don’t have business there still makes an interesting contribution to the street scene. New apartments? If they look anything like the ones on Innes it will be a stucco facade and almost hidden front door.
    Of course the billboard would make it easy to identify where you live….”Look for the billboard with the ad for…..” oh, yeah, there’s a funky tire place next door, on the corner…can’t miss it. You’ll probably have to park on Innes and avoid visiting anytime when the Dodgers are playing at home…”

  8. It seems it is hard to find a development that one can support. So much so, in fact, that I can’t recall the last time I said a development was OK. I will say that for this one, at least with the few details we have here. I can support this size development on that size lot on Sunset Boulevard. This developer is being unbelievably reasonable.

    My main opposition to the various developments always seems to focus on overdevelopment — too much being proposed, too high. This one is not that. It doesn’t say how many stories that is, but I’m sure no more than four, maybe even only three. That is very reasonable on Sunset Boulevard itself. Contrast that with the proposal for 300 units on three different lots by Sunset Junction in Silver Lake, or about 100 units per lot average, each lot about half the size of this one, and tell me whether this project is reasonable.

    They could build double or more than double what they are proposing. This is a proper size for Sunset Boulevard for a lot of that size.

    What I would call for is to make this size the maximum allowed for that zoning — because NO ONE else is proposing developments of this size, instead go for dramatically more and far higher, as the rotten development steamrolling through with the plan for 300 units around Sunset Junction, and the horrible development at Echo Park Avenue and Morton.

    • That makes a lot of sense. But it would only work if it were really easy for developers to build developments of this size. If the neighborhood keeps making it hard to get anything at all approved, then developers are going to try to squeeze every last dollar and cubic foot they can. But if they know they’ll be able to build another nearby some time soon, then they won’t feel as much of a need to fight on every single one.

      • On the contrary, the neighborhood has only come out against the biggest and worst developments. Propose something reasonable, and maybe you won’t have a fight on your hands. We do need plenty more housing, but that cannot justify outlandish overdevelopment, which we have been getting at every turn.

        I encourage more fighting of overdevelopments, not less. Frankly, the only reason Echo Park is not wall to wall big apartments now is because in the years and decades past, the people here then fought a LOT more than people are fighting now.

        • Actually, the only reason not wall to wall apts is the hillsides are a pain in the arse to build on – and rarely allow inexpensive cookie cutter solutions. And rents have historically been too low .

    • Good point. People like you complain about every development for not fitting into some utopian idea of Los Angeles that does not exist.

      • B***s**t. Some of us are eager to preserve the urban appeal of an authentic neighborhood (not “ghetto”) before it becomes a pretentious replica from the set of “Friends”, which has NEVER existed in L.A. . . . Act like you know, newbie.

        • procopio, You are a walking conflict. On one hand you are anti-development but for affordable housing. You keep calling people “newbie” boasting your native angeleno status, yet you poo poo those who want to see positive change for the neighborhood. Given that you were here the whole time and you let it go to shit under your watch, you will have to step aside now. You’ve had your chance and you blew it.

        • Affordable housing for working people who toughed-out the bad times IS the positive change that those same people initiated prior to development designed for wealthy outsiders. Btw, we’re still here. The entire purpose for the additional development is to accommodate the likes of You at the expense of the peace and quiet but vibrant diversity that’s ALways existed in EP., i.e., Act Like You Know, newbie.

          • What you are missing is the fact that in a capitalist system, the market decides. While our government does set aside subsidies to aid low-income housing (section 8), we still adhere to the capitalist system. This spurs investment, creates jobs and helps the economy flourish! You should be on the side of this development if you are on the side of the “working people”!

            Not that it matters or relevant but I moved here when I was 4 years old. I’d say I’m not much of a “newbie”. But, if you’d like by all means…

  9. Beanteam pretty much summed it up. I was born and raised in Eagle Rock so not a ‘newbie’… not sure why it would matter if I wasn’t from here. And a “Friends” reference? That show went off the air ten years ago and was set in New York. If you were trying to make a cogent point, you failed. Act like you know, indeed.

    • “Eagle Rock”(?) pft(?!). If you were then you KNOW the world of difference between Eagle Rock, Glendale, and Pasadena and Highland Park, Cypress Park, Elysian Valley, and Echo Park. Who do you think you’re fooling richie?

    • You gonna tell me that people pay more to live in Eagle Rock for the pleasure of living next to the 134? The Eagle Rock Plaza? The Solano dump? Instead of nearer Elysian Park, Dodger Stadium, Griffith Park, and downtown L.A.? Essentially the entire appeal that’s ALways been a part of living here? GTFOH. The urban nightmare you describe is precisely what distinguishes you as an intentional and perennial outsider. After all, not every community can match Eagle Rock’s charming(?) blandness.

      • Wow. I have no idea if you are going for sarcasm or if you are serious. There is no doubt, however, that you are a seriously disturbed person. Good luck with your life! I’ll not be responding anymore just in case crazy is contagious.

        • “Wow. I have no idea if you are going for sarcasm or if you are serious”. I think you’ve just experienced a reality-check, which is why I concur with your decision to disengage before you’re embarrassed any further by an N.E.L.A native in the Know. . . (“Eagle Rock”? Pffft!).

  10. I think procopio’s comments probably stem from racism against non-Latinos. Don’t worry, there will still be plenty of gang presence, graffiti and drive-bys way after this development is built. I guess those vestiges of Echo Parque are part of the urban fabric you hope to maintain. How charming.

    • I believe your immediate association between my post and “gang presence, grafitti and drive-bys” betrays your own severe strain of bigotry and prejudice. Safety and quality of life increased prior to gentrification in N.E.L.A. not the othter way around. Otherwise, you would all be rushing to gentrify south central and Compton with equal confidence but you don’t dare. I “wonder” why?

      • Betrays? Maybe he meant portrays? You are difficult to follow procipio. None the less, you’ve jumped to that imaginary race card again!

        The areas being gentrified have nothing to do with who is there now. It has everything to do with the location /infrastructure of the neighborhoods.
        Silver Lake and Echo Park for example, are close to downtown, USC and Hollywood (to name a few) which make for a convenient commute. The topography also lends itself to vistas and cool breezes in the summer time. Compton is in the flats, in the landing path of LAX and is no where near many of the studios of Hollywood and Burbank. That is the limited appeal, not what you intimated.

        Seriously dude. You really are hurting yourself with the “whitey is out to get the brown people” attitude.

        • “Betrays? Maybe he meant portrays?” NO. Perhaps you require advanced english lessons as in English 101. Otherwise, Watson (not unlike You) “betrays” a prejudice associated with “gang presence, grafitti and drive-bys” that is contrary to any grasp of the moral high-ground he assumes when it comes to race relations. Btw Newbie, there have ALways been whites in EP. Along with Asians and of course latinos. This “whitey vs. browns” scenario you keep asserting is all in your head. This is a quality of life issue for a community that is already densely populated. Those spaces could be put to much better use than multi-story apartment buildings, bars, and restaurants, e.g, there can never be too much green space to counter all of the traffic that we currently have to deal with.

          • You can find definitions of words right on that little box you are using procippy.

            intimated- past participle, past tense of in·ti·mate (Verb)

            1) Imply or hint.
            2) State or make known.


            1) Be disloyal to: “he betrayed them”.
            2) Be disloyal to (one’s country, organization, or ideology) by acting in the interests of an enemy.

            Now that you see the definitions you’ll see that you either don’t make sense or that you are contradicting yourself again. You can also see that intimated isn’t ebonics (what, now I’m black all of a sudden?), it’s actual English.

            Now you are just embarrassing yourself…

            Whilst you are learning English at the CC, you may want to sign up for an Econ class.

        • “That is the limited appeal, not what you intimated”(?). “Intimated” isn’t a word my little grammarian or perhaps I’m simply out of the loop when it comes to newbie ebonics(?). Anyway, how does $250,000 for a home or $850 a month rent sound? That is the appeal I “intimated” . . . (oh brother).

    • @ Kyle Watson: dude, your whole paragraph sounds pretty racist to me. I may or may not agree with Procopio, but i think it’s pretty lame calling him a gang member because he is Latino and doesn’t want to see a new building in that location.

      I actually try to avoid the comments on this blog lately; they were bringing me down and making me feel like everyone in the neighborhood was at each others throats. A walk down the street always reminds me that people are not stereotypes and the vast majority of EP live amongst each other with graciousness. No one speaks this way to each other in the real world.

  11. So across the street is a 45 unit apartment building on the same size lot. What makes some of you see this as another over-sized project?
    Although I am not associated with this project in any way, I am familiar with the designer/developer’s work, and I am encouraged to see this kind of project come to the area.

  12. Nice opportunity to set an example – build something with CHARACTER,
    not another stack of shoe boxes.
    Good proportions, overhanging roofs, recessed windows
    & INCLUDE the original house.

  13. Victor Heights Resident

    My neighborhood is inherently ugly to its core, blighted by horrible 1970’s apartment buildings, BUT I LOVE IT. I love it because there are people walking around outside, as well as a nice proximity to downtown, Chinatown and everything in Echo Park. I’d personally rather have a hideous 2010’s stucco apartment building than an empty downtrodden lot, as I find density not only more provocative for a community, but a necessary evil that is inevitable. I wonder, though, how much more muted the negative reaction to most of LA’s proposed stucco boxes would be if there were already a mature rail network to build off of.

    Ahem…can we get the ball rolling on the Sunset streetcar already? It’s an inevitability.

  14. Excellent point. Including plans for public transportation to accommodate 100s of new residents and to counter the increase in traffic would represent a good-faith of contributing to the community rather than just exploit its current appeal to make profit. This is the type of suggestion I’ll be making to our new councilmember. In the absence of community opposition, these developers are being allowed to pick and choose with impunity and not considering the best interests of the community.

  15. The people of Echo Park are so beautiful!

  16. The owner of the property and the LLC in question appears to be Architect Warren A Techentin. He’s a pretty well-known and his website is http://www.wtarch.com.

    • Thank you for this info. I’ve been searching online and hoping the buyer is somehow connected with a talented architect with great taste….even better they are one and the same. If this info is true…our camp truly welcomes this development as it would be a complimentary contrast to the Victorians and Craftsmans in the neighborhood and the scale/design could withstand the test of time. These worlds of differing styles can definitely live together!

  17. @Kitten Face, thanks for posting the demographics here. I am within those statistics and always have been. It’s unfortunate but it is what it is. I am planning on moving to Montana where all housing is afforable. Most of the people I know from Echo Park are 2nd and third generation. My neighbors mom is 93 and is the oldest person on my block. The g’s come and go anyway. I always see different people walking around.

  18. @LA Native says” I am planning on moving to Montana where all housing is affordable.” So those for whom Montana has become unaffordable are….? Glad it works for you but we don’t live in a vacuum.

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