The Los Angeles City Planning Commission has voted to reject appeals seeking to block the construction of multifamily residential buildings in the Arlington Heights, Hollywood, and Sawtelle.

The first development, slated for a property at 1537 S. Wilton Place, would replace a single-family dwelling with a five-story, 56-foot-tall building containing 21 apartments - including two extremely low-income units - above semi-subterranean parking for 35 vehicles.

City records list the project applicant as Gabriel Fedida and its architects as KSK Design, Inc.

In a bid to overturn approvals granted in late 2019 by the Director of the Planning Department, appellants Virginia Stevens and Andre Hart argued that the project's height is incompatible with the surrounding neighborhood and that it would provide an insufficient amount of parking. 

Representatives of West Adams Heritage, United Neighborhoods Neighborhood Council, and City Councilmember Herb Wesson both spoke in opposition to the project, arguing that the existing home meets the criteria for preservation.

The Commission, noting that the property does not fall within a recognized historic district, voted to deny the appeal.  However, approval was conditioned on design changes to the project, which one commissioner described as looking like a "Rubik's cube that was dropped."

The second project, located at 5817-5823 W. Lexington Avenue, calls for demolishing two single-family buildings to make way for a five-story, 21-unit apartment complex.

The proposed development, which would set aside two apartments as very low-income housing, would consist of four levels of wood-frame construction above a concrete podium.  Renderings from Bittoni Architects depict a boxy low-rise structure with cantilevered balconies and an exposed staircase.

Project applicant Proper Development faced an appeal from two neighboring property owners, who argued that the project would block views from a rooftop deck and is in violation of the California Environmental Quality Act.

Commissioners rejected both appeals, voting to uphold project approvals issued by the Director of City Planning.

The third development, which would replace eight existing apartments at 1721-1723 Colby Avenue, calls for the construction of a five-story building featuring 34 apartments - including six priced for low- and very low-income households.  Parking for 56 vehicles would be located in one subterranean level.

The project applicant is listed as an entity managed by Kavel Brah.  The proposed development is designed by Sam Ghanouni.

Appeals submitted by three neighboring homeowners associations  argued that the project's height is out of scale with surrounding buildings and that it lacks sufficient parking.  Additionally, one appellant expressed "deep safety concerns about the 'low income and 'very low income' housing units proposed," suggesting that future residents would bring "more crime and drugs," to the surrounding neighborhood.

A staff report refuted arguments made by all three appellants, and Commissioners voted unanimously to deny the appeals.