October 30, 1997 - From the October, 1997 issue

Inside Planning: Playa Vista Update, Crystal Cove Resort, and more!

Playa Vista Update

Numerous deadlines have passed, but talks continue on the restructuring of the Playa Vista development, the majority interest of which is being transferred from MaguirePartners to a team of investors led by Morgan Stanley and Goldman Sachs. It is widely presumed that developer Rob Maguire will retain a role in the project, albeit significantly reduced. Sources indicated that nearly all deal points have been finalized, and only smaller, less significant details remain to be hammered out. 

California Housing and Land Use Omnibus Act of 1997

Governor Wilson is expected to sign the Senate Housing & Land Use Committee's SB 20, which was adopted in late September. The bill’s most visible provision extends by one year the deadline for local governments to update their general plan housing elements. For Southern California municipalities, this extends the deadline from July l, 1998 to July I, 1999. SCAG's regional housing needs assessment—which must precede drafting of the housing element updates—has not yet been performed. 

Santa Monica—RAND Development

The RAND corporation is expected to announce in late November which developer it will partner with to build out its 15-acre Santa Monica headquarters property. Finalist candidates are rumored to include Catellus Development Corporation and Hines Interests LP of Houston. Plans call for a pedestrian-friendly office, retail and residential park linking the Third Street and Main Street shopping areas. A new headquarters facility is also planned. 

Crystal Cove Resort OK'd

The State has approved a contract which allows Crystal Cove Preservation Partners to lease 28 acres of Crystal Cove State Park for 60 years in order to construct a seaside resort. The agreement allows developers to rehabilitate 39 existing cottages, build 14 new cottages, and demolish seven more. A fitness center and restaurant will be constructed. The state will receive 5% of gross receipts from the project. 

St. John's Hospital Rebuild 

Santa Monica's St John's Hospital and Health Center will be gradually replaced over 30 years with a new $270 million complex. The six year first phase will replace the clinical and inpatient facilities, and include construction of a new diagnostic and treatment facility, parking structure, and entry plaza $140 million in Federal Emergency Management Agency funds and $130 million in donations are financing the project. 

Inglewood-Garland Village 

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The FAA and the Los Angeles Airports Department earmarked $7 .5 million as part of a $26 million plan to revitalize Inglewood's Darby Dixon area (Garland Village).The City's redevelopment agency will acquire 17 acres for commercial use, including a likely Home Depot. Also planned is extensive renovation of housing units, creation of neighborhood parks, and possibly a police substation. The area is bordered by Century Boulevard to the north, Crenshaw Boulevard to the east, 104th Street to the south and Dixon Avenue to the west.

Burbank Media Center to Start in November 

Snyder Company is scheduled to break ground in November on Burbank's first office development in five years. Beacon Properties Corporation will own and finance the Burbank Media Center, a $140 million, six-story, 585,000-square foot project adjacent to the NBC studio lot. Completion is expected by summer of 1999. 

Culver City—Block C Project 

The Culver City Redevelopment Agency is in escrow on a 72,000 s.f. lot, formerly a Buick Dealership, on which developer Oliver McMillan is planning to build a pedestrian-oriented entertainment/retail complex. The City had planned to condemn the property, but reached a purchase agreement with the owner. 

Pasadena—Biotech Zone Reduced 

In response to protest from neighborhood associations and local businesses, Pasadena's proposed Biotech Zone has been reduced from 120 acres to just 25, west of the northern end of the 110 Freeway. The amount of tax increment financing for the zone will be less than the $35 million originally estimated and could greatly hamper the success of the biotech zone. The amount of square footage remains high however, at between 700,000 to 800,000 square feet of the planned 1.2 million. 

Sen. Polanco Announces L.A. River Project 

State Senator Richard Polanco announced a $7 million allocation for a river parkway along the L.A. River. The money became available as a result of the River Parkway Sub-Account created by Polanco as part of last year's state Proposition 204 water bond initiative. $5 million will be spent on the stretch of river between Griffith Park and Downtown.

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