A collection of small commercial buildings in Santa Monica's Pico neighborhood has bit the dust, and a mixed-use development featuring affordable housing and retail is poised to rise in its place.

Community Corp. of Santa Monica, the developer behind the project at 1834-1848 14th Street, which is called Las Flores.  Approved plans call for the construction of a new four-story edifice featuring 73 apartments and 3,500 square feet of ground-floor retail space above a subterranean parking garage.

The apartment complex would include call for a mix of one-, two-, and three-bedroom apartments, which would be reserved for households earning 80 percent or less than the area median income for a period of 55 years.

DE Architects is designing the contemporary low-rise building, which would use a series of offset cubic masses which were described in a staff report to the Santa Monica Architectural Review Board as "a concept of solids and voids."  The apartment complex would be split into two masses above its first floor, with a landscaped courtyard located in-between.

As of April 2020, Community Corp. has secured $20.6 million in financing Las Flores via the City of Santa Monica.  Bank loans and tax credit equity are slated to account for the rest of the project's construction costs.

Las Flores was originally planned as a smaller three-story, 55-unit apartment building.  However, following the adoption of the state legislation AB 1763, which grants relief to affordable housing developments from certain zoning regulations related to height, density, and parking, Community Corp. revised its plans.

Completion of Las Flores is anticipated in Fall 2022, according to a news release distributed by R.D. Olson, the project's general contrator.

Community Corp., which is based out of Santa Monica, is already in construction at a senior affordable housing complex a short distance north on 14th Street, and is planning a third project at a nearby site on Pico Boulevard.

Another non-profit developer, EAH Housing, is planning affordable housing one block north at the former site of Santa Monica Nikkei Hall.

Looking for affordable housing? Visit lahousing.lacity.org/aahr

Click here for additional affordable housing resources