Franklin & Western Development Gets Redesign
The Los Angeles City Planning Commission will evaluate a controversial five-story mixed-use apartment complex planned for the corner of Franklin and Western avenues, known as “the 1860,” February 8th after the project’s initial hearing was postponed last April pending significant redesigns.
The nearly 100,000 square-foot development, which would replace a Valero gas station, a residential duplex and a single family home, would have 87 units—11 of which would be designated as affordable for four-person households making less than $45,000 per year—6,000 square feet of ground floor retail and 112 parking spaces.
While previous versions of the project included 96 apartment units—16 of which would have been designated as affordable—the development was scaled back to address community concerns over its size and aesthetic, according to Aaron Green, a consultant for the developer.
Early renderings of the development showed a single large building of uniform height, while the new version will include multiple buildings of varying heights from 20 to 60 feet, and will have what Green called a “Spanish revival look, flavor and feeling.”
According to Green, reducing the number of affordable units from 16 to 11—20% of the total planned units—was necessary to make the downsized project financially viable.
The Los Feliz Neighborhood Council (LFNC) voted last summer to support the larger version of the complex, provided developers increase the number of affordable units to 22.
According to LFNC President Luke Klipp, while the neighborhood council has not reviewed the new version of the project, “The position of the council is one of support for the larger project on the condition that there are 22 units of affordable housing. Otherwise, we oppose.”
Neighborhood councils are advisory in nature, and while the city considers them when reviewing developments, project approvals are not contingent on their support.
[UPDATE: This story was updated 2/1/18 at 10:11 a.m. to clarify the LFNC’s position on the new version of the project, which is one of opposition.]