In a unanimous vote, the Los Angeles City Planning Commission signed off on a Downtown-based non-profit's proposal to redevelop a commercial building in Florence with income-restricted housing.

Weingart Center, the organization behind the project, is seeking entitlements to build a six-story building containing 52 apartments - including 51 low-income units - above at-grade parking for eight vehicles.  Plans call for a mix of studio, one-, and two-bedroom dwellings, in addition to supportive service, community rooms, and a conference facility.

Perkins & Will is designing the proposed apartment complex, which is shown in renderings with curving corners and an exterior of ceramic tiles arranged to create horizontal stripes.  Architectural plans indicate that an amenity deck would cap the building's rooftop.

As an affordable housing development employing density bonus incentives, the project is on a streamlined entitlement pathway in accordance with SB 35 and AB 1763.

While the project received the unanimous approval of the City Planning Commission, the vote came amid opposition from members of the public who identified themselves as residents of nearby properties on 71st Street.  Objections to the project focused on its eight-car parking garage, which commenters described as being insufficient due to a lack of street parking in surrounding community.

However, Commissioners noted in response to public comment that the City is blocked by state law from requiring that the developer add parking.  Additionally, a representative of Weingart Center stated that project residents will be identified through the coordinated entry system, which would likely screen out applicants who require a car.

Weingart Center is also developing affordable and permanent supportive housing on a property in West Los Angeles and on two sites adjacent to its Downtown headquarters.

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