Longtime plans to revamap the aging West L.A. Civic Center took a step forward this week, with votes by the Los Angeles City Council and Los Angeles County Board of Supervisors to solicit development options for the campus.

The civic center, which was developed as a satellite administrative hub for local and state offices in the mid-20th century, spans the south side of Santa Monica Boulevard between Corinth and Butler Avenues.  In addition to City and County offices, the campus is also home to a police station, a public library, and a courthouse.

The request for proposals, which is scheduled to be released in the first half of May, will require responses within 90 days.  In a community meeting held on April 7, City and County officials indicated that in addition to replacement facilities for agencies that already ahve a presence on the Civic Center Campus, project goals include:

  • affordable housing;

  • public open space;

  • reduced traffic through Transit-Oriented Development;

  • improved bicycle and pedestrian amenities;

  • expanded parking facilities; and

  • neighborhood-serving retail.

A new police station and senior center were listed as "wish-list" projects.

Plans to redevelop the Civic Center have been considered on multiple occasions over the past two decades, with three different development teams previously attached to the project.  The current effort - the first combined bid by the City and County - was made possible by a $35-million purchase agreement between the County and State of California to purchase the vacant West L.A. Courthouse.  The selected developer would be expected to assist in the County's aquisition of the property.

The project would be subject to an environmental impact report, which would be conducted through Los Angeles County.

Any new construction at the Civic Center campus is unlikely before 2023.

The Civic Center, located in the Sawtelle neighborhood, sits within walking distance of a number of proposed and under-construction developments featuring multifamily housing and retail space.  Wiseman Residential is now building a mixed-use structure directly across Santa Monica Boulevard, and is planning a larger aparmtent complex two blocks east.