A $2-billion plan which would bring multiple high-rise buildings to the border between the Arts District and Skid Row is getting a helping hand from Governor Gavin Newsom.

Yesterday, the Governor's office announced that it had certified Continuum Partners' Fourth & Central development as an Environmental Leadership Development Project, making use of authority granted through SB 7 and SB 149. That distinction means that any legal challenge to the project under the California Environmental Quality Act must be decided on within 270 days, potentially shaving months off of the project timeline.

Aerial view of Fourth & Central site looking northeastStudio One Eleven / Adjaye Associates

The proposed project calls for the construction of 10 new buildings with 2.3 million square feet of floor area, including:

  • 1,521 residential units - including 949 rental units, 572 for-sale homes, and 214 units of affordable housing;
  • approximately 411,000 square feet of offices;
  • over 100,000 square feet of retail and restaurant space; and
  • a 68-key hotel.

“We are thrilled that Gov. Gavin Newsom has certified Fourth & Central as an Environmental Leadership Development Project," said Mark Falcone of Continuum Partners in a statement. "Through this important action, the Governor is signaling to the market that he will stand behind well-conceived projects that thoughtfully address the State’s urgent housing challenges, climate and transportation issues, and provide for a living wage all at the same time. The Governor has been clear that he intends to lead the State forward to meaningfully address these issues and to spur the kind of investments California’s Downtown centers will need over the next 10 years to recover their essential vitality.”

Site plan for Fourth & CentralStudio One Eleven

The project, which is named for its location at the intersection of 4th Street and Central Avenue, is on track to complete the city entitlement process by the end of 2024.

The Los Angeles Times notes that regardless of streamlining, the project faces pushbacks from organizations in the adjoining Skid Row and Little Tokyo neighborhoods, which have fought against gentrification and encroaching development from the Arts District to the east. Continuum Partners, based in Denver, has been a part of the Arts District's recent building boom, completing an office building near the Sixth Street Viaduct in 2021.

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