Temporary demolition and development restrictions proposed for Temple Street

Renderings of three Temple Street residential developments

In the wake of several new large residential developments proposed along Temple Street, Councilman Mitch O’Farrell has proposed a temporary ban on demolitions and new construction  until long-term design guidelines can be created for Historic Filipinotown and the southern edge of Echo Park.

The proposal contained in a City Council motion would “prohibit the issuance of demolition, building and any other applicable permits” across much of Historic Filipinotown between Temple Street on the north; Beverly Boulevard and 3rd Street on the south; Hoover Street on the west and Glendale Boulevard on the east.

O’Farrell, in a blog post, said Historic Filipinotown residents have expressed concerns about the loss of the neighborhood’s historic character and scale in light of new developments.  Most of the developments that have been announced so far also offer little or no ground-floor retail space,  which some residents and business owners say could hamper efforts to attract new businesses and services to Temple Street. “I introduced a motion that would establish long range planning tools that will help absorb new growth while preserving the distinct look and feel of the historic community.”

The area includes three recent Temple Street residential projects that would bring more than 180 new apartment units. Those developments, in addition to speculation about other projects that have yet to be announced, have triggered concern among neighbors worried about the impact on parking and the construction of new buildings that are considerably larger than many existing buildings.

The motion, if adopted by the full City Council, would direct the Planning Department and City Attorney to create what’s called an Interim Control Ordinance that would restrict demolition and new construction until permanent design guidelines are in place.


  1. I would normally be crying foul as I tend to be very pro-development, but the potential for Temple street is just too overwhelming to allow these quick cash-ins to take over such a fantastic area while offering no amenities for the community. A four-story height limit, sidewalk retail, corner plaza building cutouts for alfresco dining locations, and below grade parking. This is not rocket science. This is how we’ve been developing cities for centuries.

  2. Luiza Mavropoulos

    Oh my councilman your doing the right thing?? How come I dont believe you…????
    Esp. When you’ve led our kids to the slaughter.??

  3. It should always be the case that neighborhoods have planning and design guidelines in place in anticipation of all development. Otherwise, you end up with a mess!

  4. There is a lot of construction going on right now in L.A. There must be at least 5,000 apartments that will come on line in the next year or two, plus a lot of condo’s and retail spaces. I think the builders/investors are way ahead of the people’s ability to pay for all this. Put all sharp objects away, there are bubbles around.

  5. Yes. Dead on. “no ground-floor retail space, which some residents and business owners say could hamper efforts to attract new businesses and services to Temple Street.”

    If you want evidence head over to Figueroa and Cesar Chavez and witness the epic fail in design of the Orsini. It looks like a damn fortress. Surprise! The token “retail” spaces are mostly empty. Why? Because it’s easier for the residents to get to their cars than it is to walk down to the street. Anyone within walking distance can hardly see that there is any retail shops because of the fortress like design. Did these architects even study urban planning or EVER visit little places like um, New York City or San Francisco. Just a thought.


  7. You mean Mitch wants to keep Historic Filipinotown and Temple street a shitty dump?

  8. As someone who actually lives in this area, I appreciate all the press HIFI is getting. I’d especially like to mention how impressed I am with Councilman O’Farrell and his staff. My partner sent a letter to his office regarding some issues we were having with our landlord. We were contacted with in a few days by one of his deputy staff members. I was never expecting to hear back at all, let alone so quickly. My head was spinning.

    He’s got my attention. And my support.

  9. What the Heck! What bullshit afterthought Mitch! No one cared when low income housing kept popping up left and right but now that fair market housing is going up helping to bring folks that could lure new shops and eateries into the nabe, everyone is having a cow. While I do believe there needs to be good planning and oversight especially on commercial corridors (which Temple is), this motion now seems to render this neighborhood’s development into a complete halt. After the whole real estate debacle and now self interest politics, the folks in this neighborhood might now still be left with a gaping whole at Union Ave. and Temple. Unless there is a clear cut vision into play, it would be ludicrous to hamper progress on lots that have already been excavated and clearly need to be filled. The site on Union should have very limited retail as it jets into the quiet neighborhood while the project facing Temple by Glendale could use some commercial. The original buildings that existed were not pedestrian friendly at all. Temple street could use & needs development as it is a vital corridor that is a straight shot into Downtown! People, before you cry foul, your rent will stabilize if there are more options! Also understand The Orsini shops sit empty because the owner is asking for higher than average rent on the commercial spaces.

    City Council think hard and do not render this neighborhood into a complete political toy! There is no need to impede progress but to help shape it!

    Eastsider is there a way to post a copy of the motion here so that the public can read it more readily?

  10. Thank you Mitch and you staff for responding to your constituents concerns for this great neighborhood.

Post a Comment

Please keep your comments civil and on topic and refrain from personal attacks. The moderator reserves the right to edit or delete any comments. The Eastsider's Terms of Use and Privacy Policy apply to comments submitted by readers. Required fields are marked *