Boyle Heights’ haunted hospital to be turned into senior housing

Photo by PhotoJenInc/Flickr

The former Linda Vista Hospital in Boyle Heights closed more than 20 years ago but it has been far from vacant. The hospital overlooking Hollenbeck Park has proven to be a popular spot for TV and movie shoots as well as believers in the paranormal, who have promoted the nearly century-old hospital as one of L.A.’s most haunted places.  But the hospital’s days of hosting movie shoots and paranormal investigations is quickly coming to and end after the entire hospital property on the 600 block of St. Louis Street has been purchased by an affordable housing developer, which plans to build about 100 units of senior housing and medical offices within the landmark structure.  Construction work on the first phase of the approximately  $37 million project is scheduled to begin early next year, said Maurice Ramirez, executive vice president for AMCAL, an affordable housing developer.

“With the shortage of housing and affordable housing, this is a good fit with what can be done with the building,” Ramirez said.

AMCAL purchased the property a few years after a previous developer announced plans to convert the hospital, a national historic landmark, into market-rate condos. But those plans fell apart with the economy.

Ramirez said the firm plans to renovate the two major buildings on the site – the main hospital building and a former nurses’ residence – that have been recognized as historic landmarks. The first phase of construction would begin in February on the nurses building,which will be converted into 24 apartments for seniors on limited incomes. The, second, more ambitious part of the project would include building 74 apartments  in the upper floors of the main hospital and ground floor medical offices. AMCAL still needs to find funds to convert the main hospital but he said work could begin at the end of 2012.

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