Last week, we took an opportunity to reflect on some of the biggest stories in Los Angeles real estate, architecture, and urban planning news from 2023. Now, we turn our sites forward and check in on what we'll be keeping our eyes on in 2024.
Looking back at the previous installment of this round-up - some of what was expected came to pass, but not all. the West Edge made its debut in Sawtelle, Beaudry opened in Downtown Los Angeles, and another big development started work at La Cienega/Jefferson Station. On the other hand, we're still waiting to see shovels hit dirt for the Van Nuys Boulevard light rail line and Apple's new office complex, and the shell of Oceanwide Plaza remains empty save for the occasional photographer who ventures into the construction site in search of Instagram clout.
Should things proceed to schedule, this will be the year that the Arts District's first skyscraper makes its debut. Alloy, which is being developed by Carmel Partners at 520 S. Mateo Street, will feature 475 live/work apartments in a 35-story high-rise, with roughly 100,000 square feet of offices next door and retail space below.
The project is notable of course because of its height relative to its surroundings (and perhaps some of the shenanigans that went into its approval, but that's another story). However, it also is a sign of things to come for the Arts District, particularly following the adoption of DTLA 2040. Several similar high-rise developments are already in the permitting or entitlement stages nearby, and more could follow as city officials try to steer 20 percent of L.A.'s projected growth through 2040 into Downtown.
In February, Sankofa Park is scheduled to open for the public in the median of Crenshaw Boulevard just south of Leimert Park. It's the first major component of Destination Crenshaw, a 1.3-mile public art and open space project which will flank the at-grade section of the K Line. Similar parks are set to follow in the near future along the corridor between Vernon Avenue in the north to 60th Street in the south.
Another major element currently in the works is a refresh of the iconic Crenshaw Wall at Crenshaw and 50th Streets. The 787-foot-wall will be repainted by the RTN Crew, which created the wall's original mural more than 20 years ago.
Some eight years after acquiring the former home of the Los Angeles Times, Onni Group is moving through the plan-check process for a high-rise development which would rise on the western side of the complex, replacing a William Pereira-designed structure at 100 S. Broadway. Plans call for the construction of 37- and 53-story buildings featuring 1,127 apartments above 34,000 square feet of ground-floor commercial space and a 1,700-car garage (across the street from the Historic Broadway subway station).
While many developers have put their plans on hold in a time of high interest rates, Onni Group seems to be particularly resilient in the face of these types of headwinds, and has remained on track with their behind-the-scenes work to clear the path for construction to begin.
Los Angeles has earned its reputation for particularly grim bus stops - but if the city's promises can be believed, 2024 is the year where things start getting turned around. A $30-million Public Works trust fund loan announced last year is supposed to pay for the first installment of the Sidewalk and Transit Amenities Program - or STAP - which calls for building 3,000 bus shelters and 450 shade structures citywide. The end goal is to bring shelter to 75 percent of bus stops in each of the city's 15 council districts, with the cost partially offset through on-site advertising.
While we are not expecting shovels to hit dirt for the project this year, we will be keeping a close eye on the Convention Center expansion. The city has considered several variations of the project going back to 2010 (remember Farmer's Field?), but now with a tight deadline to complete work before the 2028 Olympics, officials are now wondering whether it makes sense to build now or wait until after the games. Likewise, there has been discussion over whether or not the city should go it on its own or continue with private sector partners. While a delay may portend a rough few years ahead for Downtown, which has seen hotels and restaurant shutter since the pandemic, the notion of having to relocate events out of the neighborhood because of missed construction deadlines is not a desirable outcome either. Either way, we should find out what the path forward is sometime in 2024.
In Summer 2024, Steinhauer Properties is aiming to break ground on the Hard Rock Hotel Long Beach at 100 N. Ocean Boulevard. The proposed 31-story development, which would feature 427 guest rooms, is also expected to restore access to the Jergins Tunnel, which has set below Ocean Boulevard since the 1920s.
At completion, the project would rank among the tallest structures in Long Beach - but the recently-crowned champion Shoreline Gateway development a few blocks to the east will remain on top of the hill for now.
If the concrete viaduct that now snakes out of the central terminal area is any indication, construction is entering the home stretch for the LAX automated people mover - the centerpiece of the airport's more than $5-billion landside access modernization plan. The 2.25-mile system will ferry passengers between their terminals, two ground transportation hubs, and the new consolidated rental car hub. After five years of construction, the system is on track to open in 2024.
Another key addition to the ground transportation scene at LAX is the new LAX/Metro Transit Center Station - the $900-million light rail stop which is being built to serve the C and K Lines. In the case of the latter service, the after-the-fact addition of the massive at-grade stop at Aviation Boulevard and 96th Street has delayed the grand opening of the southernmost leg (including a nearby station at Aviation and Century Boulevard). As with the people mover, which it will connect with, construction is slated for completion in 2024. At long last, your train (to the train) to the airport is arriving.
Hollywood Burbank Airport, often in the shadow of massive LAX, will soon get a chance to shine. Construction is slated to begin in 2024 for the airport's replacement terminal - a 355,000-square-foot building with 14 passenger gates which is intended to evoke film industry glitz and glamour.
With the release of a final environmental impact report late last year, the contentious plan for a new gondola line between Union Station and the Dodger Stadium parking lots continues to move through the review process. The $500-million project, which is backed by former Dodger's owner Frank McCourt, could begin work sometime in 2024 if the Metro Board gives it its blessing. But more obstacles are likely - the project has already withstood one legal challenge, but if the billboards in Chinatown are any indication, more can be expected.
Any other items to keep an eye on during 2024? Let us know in the comments below.
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