August 30, 1997 - From the August, 1997 issue

Inside Planning: Inglewood Theaters Approved, Section 8 Contracts, and more!

Local Gov't: Loser in State Budget 

The bipartisan budget compromise that slashed $1.6 billion from the State spending plan left county governments hurting. Some cuts affecting counties: $280 million in ERAF shifts, $100 million for police protection and $63 million for general assistance buy-out. 

Council: "No" on Big Tujunga Golf

The Los Angeles City Council voted down a proposed golf course on the banks of the Big Tujunga Wash, in Councilman Joel Wachs' district. The 10-4 vote flew in the face of the Planning Commission's recommendation and the Councilman's support of the project. Some credit the defeat to union activists involved in a dispute with Kajima Corporation, a lienholder on the property. But insiders give equal weight to Wachs' alleged failure to privately or publicly ask for project support from his fellow Councilmembers. Takings litigation is likely to ensue.

Inglewood Theaters Approved 

After a heated debate, the Inglewood City Council voted 4-1 to approve K&L International Partners' plans to build a 130,000 s.f. multiplex and retail complex in the City's Downtown redevelopment area.

Playa Vista Bonds on Hold 

Delays in finalizing financing for the Playa Vista project have prompted the City of Los Angeles to put a temporary hold on a $280 million bond. The City agreed to the bond issue, the largest ever under the Mello-Roos Community Facilities Act, on the condition that Dream Works SKG build a film studio on the site. 

Santa Monica Urban Design OKd 

Santa Monica City Council approved the Downtown Urban Design Plan, hoping to expand on the success of the Third Street Promenade. Phase I, which includes restoring two-way traffic on Broadway and 5th Street and extending parking availability on 4th Street, begins this fall. RFPs will be released subsequently for Phase II—a transit mall along Broadway and Santa Monica, sidewalk widening and other streetscape improvements. 

"Hollywood Parkade" Proposed 

With a $2 million Community Development Block Grant in hand, the L.A. Community Redevelopment Agency released an request for proposals last month for parties interested in developing the "Hollywood Parkade," a retail/parking structure proposed near the Hollywood/Highland Metro Station. CRA officials say the facility will offer spaces for Park n' Ride Metro customers.

Westwood Cinamerica Plan 

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Plans for Mann Theaters parent Cinamerica to build a 10-screen multiplex on the west side of Westwood Village took a giant step forward last month with an announcement that Cinamerica had bought the land underneath the Mann Regent and Mann Fourplex Theaters, which the company has said it plans to raze. The new screens would compete directly with the Village Center Westwood's 13-screen multiplex slated for the opposite side of the Village. 

Glendale Plaza Groundbreaking 

Ground broke on August 7 for the 520,000 s.f. Glendale Plaza office building, the first in a new crop of speculative office properties starting to rise throughout the region. The 24-story building is expected to be completed in early 1999.

Burbank—New Disney Tower 

Walt Disney Co. has submitted plans to build a 10- story office tower near the southwest corner of Riverside Drive and Buena Vista Street in Burbank. The project is part of the City Council-approved master plan for the Disney Studios Lot. Groundbreaking is expected within a few months. 

Fannie Mae and ARCS Will Run 2-Year Small Loan Experiment 

Fannie Mae selected ARCS Commercial Mortgage and Greystone Servicing Corporation to participate in their Small Loan Experiment, a $500 million, two-year pilot project that will offer fixed-rate seven or 10-year balloon mortgage loans from $500,000 to $2 million, with 25-year amortization. This financing is hoped to help small apartment owners stabilize rental rates in selected areas. 

Section 8 Contracts 

Housing and Urban Development recently issued an urgent notice renewing Section 8 contracts for 60 days to allow HUD to review and determine which properties do not comply with the provisions of Section 21l(b)(4)(B) of the FY 1997 Appropriations Act. The action has forced some low-income residents on properties receiving project-based rental assistance to find other housing. The contract renewal reduction is part of ongoing Section 8 debt restructuring. 

L.A. County Acquires Mountain Land

Los Angeles County has acquired, for preservation and protection, the 696-acre Micor II property in the Santa Monica Mountains. The land was originally slated for development of 250 estate lots on 938 acres. The $3.02 million price tag will be paid jointly by the 1996 Safe Neighborhood Parks, Act, the City of Calabasas, and the Las Virgenes Municipal Water District/Triunfo Sanitation District.

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