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Plans to build housing on Lincoln Heights parking lots stir up opposition

By BARRY LANK

LINCOLN HEIGHTS – There has been a lot of buzz in the neighborhood about what the city has planned for five  public parking lots near the shops and restaurants of North Broadway.  Some claim the lots will be turned into homeless centers and the sites for 1,000 apartments. While officials have refuted that number and other claims,  it’s clear that city leaders want affordable housing built on those lots.

The plans for affordable housing were  set in motion nearly two years ago by Mayor Eric Garcetti, who recommended that numerous municipally-owned properties across the city, including the Lincoln Heights parking lots, could used for housing.  Since then, the city has been refining the list and seeking out proposals from developers.

The city wants housing built on five Department of Transportation parking lots near North Broadway:

2332-2340 N. Workman
216-224 S. Avenue 24
2331-2337 N. Workman and 2330-2338 N. Daly
2416-2422 N. Workman
154-164 S. Avenue 24

Some Lincoln Heights residents have begun to organize in opposition, saying the community has been left out of the process, including the selection of potential developers.

Building housing on the lots they say will eliminate needed parking spaces for North Broadway shops. One group, the Coalition to Save Lincoln Heights, has started an online fundraiser to wage a legal battle against the city’s proposal.

“This will impact the business district of Lincoln Heights, as well as drop the property value of the community,” said the group’s fundraising page.

In response, the office of 1st District Councilmember Gil Cedllo last week issued statements and fact sheets to update residents about the parking lots.

Under the current concept, the housing to be built in Lincoln Heights would include apartments that would be reserved for low-income tenants as well as units rented out at market rates. Some homeless people could end up living there as well for little or no rent and supported by social service programs, said council office spokesman Fredy Ceja

As to how many housing units will be built in Lincoln Heights, that has yet to be determined, say city officials. However, Ceja said that any parking spaces lost to housing will be replaced.

The City Administrative Officer – which is overseeing the Affordable Housing Opportunities Sites Initiative  – estimates that a total of 500 units will be built over 12 city properties spread across town. It’s not clear how many of those 500 units would be in Lincoln Heights.

It’s not the first time a proposal to build  housing on public parking lots has stirred up controversy on the Eastside. In Highland Park, the city’s plans to build a mix of housing  on lots between Figueroa Street and the Highland Park Gold Line station has been tied up for years in the face of community opposition and legal challenges.

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19 comments

  1. The moral of the story, nobody wants to live next to homeless, rich or poor, white or brown, old or older… it doesn’t matter.

    The attempt is to mitigate the affects of Formerly homeless housing with inclusionary zoning but of course that would entail larger buildings to offset the cost of subsidized units; the plans for these larger buildings are then CRUCIFIED and incinerated when “locals” threaten to sue using CEQA.

    At what point we will as a city accept that we need to build more housing and less parking? When there’s 70,000 homeless, 80,000 100,000??

    • Don’t build that in Lincoln heights

      Y don’t we bbuild homeless shelters in the desert

      • There’s a dozen reasons why we don’t… more expensive (i.e. new infrastructure on the taxpayers dime vs. using what we already have more efficiently), less access to services, minimal economic activity (AKA minimal chance they’ll ever find a steady job and rebuild their lives.)

        Consolidating our homeless neighbors apart from our communities is immoral. And just terrible policy in general because concentrated poverty spreads like a virus… see Skid Row.

      • Los Angeles county is huge. Build these units elsewhere.

      • We did, it’s called Lancaster. That place along with Palmdale, Hesperia and the like are complete pits for this exact reason you suggested. It’s become the trash collector of displaced impoverished.

  2. Re: Plans to build housing on Lincoln Heights parking lots stir up opposition by Barry Lark.

    The Coalition to Protect Lincoln Heights GREATLY appreciates the exposure to our GROWING endeavor initiated by “Some”, into a communal act of accountability via “Many”, regarding the Punitive/Arbitrary Actions of CD-1 City Councilman Gil Cedillo (and Mayor Eric Garcetti), that would adversely impact the Greater Lincoln Heights Community.

    As witness via the massive turnout of community members at the last Lincoln Heights Neighborhood Council Meeting (1-18-18). The great majority who spoke during the Q & A with CD 1 Staffer Jose Rodriguez, were UNITED in expressing the following.

    ** 1. The 5 parking lots have been approved and will be built on: Cedillo’s stated that the Designated Developer (and their chosen Sub-contractor) have already been selected.

    ** 2. There was lack of community input and outreach: Last January, that same Staffer Jose Rodriguez stated that Cedillo was ignorant of the selection of the Five Broadway Business Corridor Lots, for use as Measure HHH Homeless Housing Developments …….., and REQUESTED their removal for consideration.

    ** 3. Gilbert Cedillo is not transparent with the community of Lincoln Heights: Allegedly, Councilman Cedillo Chief of Staff Arturo Chavez stated that these projects were going forward, REGARDLESS (or absence) of community input/concerns.

    ** 4. Our lawsuit will pause the process giving our community the time and attention we deserve: An ACTION caused by the communal disrespect initiated by “Broken Deal Cedillo”.

  3. Since these are city-owned lots, and since the city is in the midst of a homeless crisis, there is absolutely no excuse for market rate housing to be built on these properties.

    It’s one thing to say that perhaps 5-10% of a private development might be set aside for affordable housing. But with publicly-owned properties, it’s essential to address our public crisis in homelessness by building homes for those who would otherwise live on the streets — and not for well-off professionals who have other options.

    • “well-off professionals who have other options”

      Where? Santa Monica? This area is ripe for middle class Angelenos.
      Even for them it’s a stretch. If Los Angeles is unaffordable to you
      there’s a big country out there full of wide open spaces…..

      • “This area is ripe for middle class Angelenos.
        Even for them it’s a stretch. ”

        This seems like a contradiction. Which is it?

    • Why should I struggle to wake up at 5:30am every day, shower and dress, run to catch the bus, slave all day long at a minimum wage job, spend an hour and a half in traffic to get home, do housework, get barely enough sleep at night, wake up the next day at 5:30am to do it all over again?
      Just so I can pay taxes, health insurance and monthly rent for my dumpy little L.A. apartment with not a penny left.
      Why not live a life of freedom – go to sleep and get up when I want, wear the same smelly clothes every day, panhandle at the freeway on ramp, get as stoned or as drunk as I like for as long as I like.
      And put my name on Los Angeles official homeless resident list.
      The old me just works and works and can never get ahead.
      The new me has no boss and no greedy landlord.
      And I’m fast moving up the waiting list to move into a brand new free apartment for life!

  4. This housing project should get built in Garcetti’s neighborhood if he’s so supportive of the idea. We don’t need anymore crime in Lincoln Heights!

    • What neighborhood is Garcetti’s neighborhood?
      Is it the Windsor Square section of Hancock Park where Mayor Garcetti and his family receive free room and board from Los Angeles City taxpayers at the residence on South Irving Blvd. which the Getty Oil Company deeded to the City in 1975?
      Of course, Garcetti is only a temporary occupant while he holds the Office of Mayor.
      After that, he will have to find somewhere else to live.
      Garcetti and his wife sold their home on Hidalgo Street in Silver Lake after he won election as Mayor.
      When his term expires, Garcetti will be homeless.

  5. 18.6 million parking spaces in Los Angeles County
    50,000 to 60,000 homeless in Los Angeles County
    #ThinkOfTheCars!

  6. We need housing in this city and we need a lot of it. What we do not need is more subsidized housing and more rent control. That just drives up the cost of housing for everyone else. Let the developers overbuild. They always do. The key to getting the cost of rental housing down is to increase the vacancy rate. That is the only number the city needs to concern itself with. Get the vacancy rate up to about 10% and we will see a return back to deals like the $500 move in special and landlords offering a month or two of free rent. As for the homeless there is not much you can do for them. Most of them are mentally ill or addicted to drugs. Spending anything on them is a waste of time and resources.

  7. There’s a great big new park being built on Albion, walking distance from the city parking lots in question.
    Why not build housing there instead?

  8. Subsidized housing for people sleeping in the gutter or subsidized storage for people too cheap to pay the meter? Should be a no-brainer really.

  9. The problem isn’t that these are being built in Lincoln Heights – it’s that there are 12 such new developments across ALL OF LOS ANGELES, and 5 are being built in this ONE PART OF ONE NEIGHBORHOOD.

    Put 1 or 2 here in Lincoln Heights, but 5 out of 12 should not be in one neighborhood – that’s an incredibly short-sighted way to fulfill their promise of 12 new developments.

    • Does not belong here

      Lincoln heights does not have the infrastructure and budget to take on the homeless, they need to be placed in cities with such resources. Bringing on low income residents in low income areas propels and creates exponential safety issues. placement of these homeless shelters/low income units will be better off in higher income areas, which is supported by reasearch. lincoln heights deserves a chance to participate in higher income flows, investments to better its city before taking such on more responsibility. thus, your options should be, beverly hills, culver city, santa monica.. etc..

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