With Produce LA now complete in the Arts District, Continuum Partners and Platinum Equity are now inching closer to building an even larger office building next door.

View of parking deck in use as event spaceEYRC Architects

Yesterday, the Los Angeles City Planning Commission voted to support a zone change and general plan amendment requested by the two companies to build a 14-story office tower located at 640-657 Mesquit Street. The proposed project, slated to replace the parking lot of Produce LA, would include nearly 190,000 square feet of office space on its upper floors, with 4,325 square feet of commercial space and 397 parking stalls located in a garage below.

“We are elated to receive unanimous support from the Los Angeles City Planning Commission for our creative office proposal at 655 Mesquit in the Arts District," said Continuum Partners founder and chief executive Mark Falcone in a statement. "This milestone marks an important step in the process and bring us that much closer to realizing our vision. We look forward to working closely with the City to bring smart planning, substantial investment, and abundant job creation to the Arts District. Our commitment to Los Angeles has never been greater, and we are extremely optimistic about the future of the city.”

EYRC Architects is designing the roughly 195-foot-tall development, which would feature an exterior of corrugated metal, concrete, and glass. Plans also call for a rooftop amenity deck and an L-shaped pedestrian paseo at street level, which would connect Mesquit Street with Jesse Street through the property.

According to an environmental report published earlier this year by the Planning Department, construction of the tower is expected to occur over a roughly two-year period, with completion set to occur as early as 2025.

View of paseo at 655 MesquitEYRC Architects

In addition to voting to support project entitlements, the Commission also denied an appeal from CREED LA, an alliance of building trade unions, which argued that the proposed tower should be subject to a full environmental impact report, an alleged that studies conducted to date do not adequately assess potential impacts to greenhouse gas emissions, air quality, noise, and vehicle miles traveled.

A staff report, refuting the arguments raised by CREED LA, had recommended denial of the appeal.

The project, which would rise just south of the new Sixth Street Viaduct, is one of more than a half-dozen large office projects slated for the Arts District, which has seen an influx of new proposals since the arrival of Warner Music Group and Spotify.  Vancouver-based Onni Group is planning 187,000 square feet of offices as part of its 2143 Violet Street development, and similar projects from Jade Enterprises, Hines, and Tishman Speyer are also in the works nearby.  Los Angeles-based Lowe topped out on a nine-story, 113,000-square-foot office building last year.

The site also sits in close proximity to an even larger mixed-use project, designed by Bjarke Ingles, slated for a site on the opposite side of Mesquit Street, as well as a property which could be the future home of an Arts District Metro stop.

655 Mesquit StreetGoogle Maps

Continuum Partners, one of the two firms leading the Mesquit office tower, has even bigger plans in another part of Downtown. The company announced last year a proposal which would raze a cold storage facility at the intersection of 4th Street and Central Avenue to make way for the construction of multiple high-rise buildings containing offices, a hotel, apartments, and retail.