A new look on Temple Street

HISTORIC FILIPINOTOWN — Many new large apartment buildings are often derided as “stucco boxes.” Well, you can’t say that about Cactus, one of the new apartment buildings that been built along Temple Street.

Tenants have begun to move into the four-story, 47-unit apartment complex that stretches across the entire block between Coronado and Carondelet streets. Designed by Patrick Tighe Architecture of Venice, Cactus featured angled roof lines and corners cut away at the diagonal. The complex is shaped like a giant U that forms a courtyard. The exterior is covered in cement-board rectangles and narrow slits of windows. At the center is a wedged shaped building covered in purple metal, glass and gray concrete.

Many of these design features, however, are missing on the back, or south side of the building, where it most resembles the unloved stucco box, looming over smaller homes and apartments.

The $7 million project was built by Silver Lake developer 4Site Real Estate, which has built other apartments on Temple as well as on  Beverly Boulevard. Rents for one-bedroom units begin at $1,900 while bedrooms rent for $2,800 and up, according to the Cactus website.

Cactus is part of a new wave of residential construction along Temple Street, west of Downtown. About 500 apartments have recently been built or are in the works on or just off Temple in Echo Park and Historic Filipinotown.

The south side of Cactus looms over smaller homes and apartments

A small amount of commercial space is included in the ground floor.

A wedge-shaped building on Temple serves as the lobby of the apartment complex.

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  1. I’m sure I’m not the only one who finds this ugly. The awful colors and slat windows are reminiscent of a jail.

    • wtf_is_a_hispter_anymore

      Yes. Those windows are straight up County lock up. LOL!

      • Oh, you already said what I as going to point out. Looks exactly like prison windows, designed for little light and to prevent you from breaking out. At at a gouging $1,900 a month for a one-bedroom in a crummy area like that.

        This thing is even uglier than the ugly square boxes that normally get built. It looks like the ugly one in the picture down the block from it – this developer must be specializing in uglyfying the area.

        This city is becoming much,much uglier than it already was. Other towns and cities have design requirements that make for nice places, but not LA.

        • Actually LA has design requirements that make it ugly, The regulations are part of “Parking Minimums” which require builders / developers to dedicate roughly 30% of a project to parking cars. The cost of including such a expensive and inherently unattractive eye sore (called parking podiums) preclude a feasible and tasteful design.

          If you look at buildings all over the world (and early LA buildings) designed without parking, they are much prettier than what we are forced to build in LA because of outdated “parking minimums”

  2. Are these financials accurate? At $7,000,000 project cost those units would be $149,000 ea. Tack on the developers / owners profit and you shouldn’t see a single unit in there renting for more than $1,100.

    Something doesn’t add up

    • That figure comes from the L.A. Department of Building & Safety

      • The LADBS numbers are given by the builder – who offers a minimally plausible number because for some reason permit fees are based on this made up number.

        • I’m pretty sure there aren’t many places in Echo Park you can rent apartments for $1100 anymore. Why would a developer price their units below what everyone else is asking? They’re just taking advantage of what they know people will pay.

          • That is exactly why voters should have passed measure S. We don’t need more huge buildings full of apartments or condos that at least 80 % of current Angeles can not afford. Who are these units for? Maybe wealthy foreigners and/ or AirBNB travelors? No one should be allowed obscene profits at the expense of destroying the oringinal, pleasant, open and green character and livability of our city! The City should enforce the law and deny permits to tear down units protected by the Rent Stabilization Ordinance and only consider granting variances to projects containing only affordable units or projects of special value to current residents. I live on Temple Street and over the years several huge complexes have been built. You can hardly park here anymore. Many trees have been removed. This is now one of the most densely populated areas. We have done or share. The City should stop allowing more of these monstrositis here!

          • I’m not disputing the principals of capitalism. I understand they can charge whatever they want, it just seems like an incredibly low cost per unit for construction.

            While many new units in the city are commanding crazy prices, they certainly aren’t receiving full price on their asks. So if an owner has the chance to lease all their units at 1,100 or lease 50% of them at 1,900. you can be assured, they will lower their price to meet the market.

            We keep complaining about the lack of “affordable housing” but developers are carefully crafting their projects based on strict pro formas, If luxury wasn’t selling, they wouldn’t be building luxury.

    • There is no restriction on how much they can charge, they are not barred from gouging. The prices charges are not limited by the cost.

      People have the mistaken idea that prices are set by some specific percentage over cost — no, prices are set by the highest amount they think they can squeeze out of you, no matter that their cost might allow them to charge even only 25% of that.

      Lowering the cost to a developer will NOT bring down the price they charge — and since they already will be charging the most they can get, increasing their price will not raise the price they charge, because they can’t get it.

  3. Well that won’t age well. In fact, it already hasn’t.

  4. A wonderful view of 2 liquor stores and a recycling center

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