A proposed permanent supportive housing development in South Los Angeles is the latest project to tap an unconventional building material in a bid to lower construction costs. 

The Watts Works project, which was submitted earlier this month to the city of Los Angeles for entitlements, would replace a vacant single-family home at 9502 S. Compton Avenue.  Plans call for stacking recycled shipping containers into a four-story structure which would contain 25 apartments - including 24 studio units for low-income residents - above bike storage and community spaces.

The developers - Decro Corporation, Daylight Community Development, and The People Concern - were recently awarded $23.8 million in Measure HHH funds by the City of Los Angeles to explore new approaches to low-cost affordable housing.  They money is expected to go toward multiple projects, housing up to 132 people.

The Watts development, designed by Studio One Eleven, steps its massing back to preserve a 70-year-old avocado tree, which serves as a centerpiece to its ground-level community space.  Other open spaces include a community room, a rear barbecue area, and a third-level amenity deck.

Indie Dwell is also partnering on the design and construction of the prefabricated units.

Studio One Eleven, which has previously employed modular construction at projects in Bellflower and Garden Grove, is not the only architecture firm employing the technology for affordable housing.  Additional projects composed of prefabricated modular units are planned or under construction in Westlake, South Los Angeles, and Downtown.

Interested in finding affordable housing? Visit housing.lacity.org.