South Park is no stranger to multi-tower mega-projects. Already a pair of $1 billion developments, Metropolis and Oceanwide Plaza, and the $500 million Circa, are under construction. Other giant deals are in the planning and entitlement stage.
Get ready for one more. Developer City Century recently unveiled plans for a three-tower project at 1015 W. Olympic Blvd. near L.A. Live. It would transform a set of parking lots into a mega-structure with 1,367 market-rate apartments and 40,000 square feet of retail and restaurant space.
“Downtown L.A. has proven to be a viable 24/7 neighborhood,” City Century Executive Vice President Stuart Morkun said. “The idea is to provide market rate units to meet the growing demand in Downtown for housing. This project, with the location adjacent to L.A. Live and its strong visibility on the western edge of Downtown, can accomplish those things.”
The project, known as the Olympia, is being designed by Skidmore, Owings & Merrill, the firm that also worked on Downtown’s recently opened Federal Courthouse in the Civic Center. No budget or timeline have been revealed.
Early designs show three glass-fronted high-rises on a parcel across the street from the L.A. Live movie theaters. A single podium complex would wrap around the trio of structures.
The project would tower over the 110 Freeway. Plans also call for more than 115,000 square feet of open space, with numerous gardens. A plaza along Olympic Boulevard would be open to the public.
Morkun said the three towers fit with Downtown Los Angeles design standards and also attempt to strike a balance between indoor and outdoor space.
City Century, the American subsidiary of the Shanghai-based Shenglong Group, acquired the site about a year ago from a group of investors, Morkun said. The developer anticipates the project having enough environmentally sensitive and sustainable elements to achieve LEED Silver certification from the U.S. Green Building Council.
This is the second area project that City Century has proposed. Last spring, the company announced plans to erect a 24-story building at 1233 S. Grand Ave. The development, known as the Grand Residences, would have a slightly hexagonal shape and contain 161 apartments. Plans to break ground by the end of 2016 have been slightly delayed.
Morkun said that although many South Park mega-projects are under construction or in the planning stage, he is not worried about the neighborhood becoming overcrowded.
“Bring on the saturation. The quicker we build this kind of density and get that urban environment together, the better,” Morkun said. “This site is next to these really dynamic and great projects. We’re hoping it fills up.”