In short, our team saw several key ways to improve upon the originally approved project and respond to some of the City’s stated goals related to housing, creative office, open space, and an enhanced pedestrian experience. For example, the general lack of office space in West Hollywood, combined with the increased interest in low-rise office due to the ongoing Covid pandemic, led us to update and revise our plans for the Melrose Triangle. Most notably, the modifications are designed to address two of the city’s most pressing issues, the lack of affordable housing and a shortage of office space. We believe the results will enhance the project’s attractiveness for tenants and neighbors alike.
Our updated plans increase the number of on-site affordable units from 15 to 41. We have also reduced some of the retail square footage while adding much-needed low-rise office space.
Under the revised plan, Melrose Triangle contains 245,000 square feet of office space, 66,000 square feet of commercial space, 41 affordable residential units, and 525 subterranean parking spaces. By contrast, the previously entitled project included 137,064 square feet of office space, 82,021 square feet of commercial space, 76 residential units with 15 earmarked as affordable, and 884 parking spaces. The total square footage and height remain the same.
We want the Melrose Triangle Project to be part of the solution. The inclusion of affordable housing is intended to help the city of West Hollywood address its jobs-housing balance. Moreover, the affordable housing units are intended to foster the sense of community in the area and offer individuals currently working in West Hollywood the opportunity to live closer to their place of employment. In contrast to the previously approved version of the project, all of the housing in the modified Melrose Triangle will be set aside as affordable housing units, including much-sought workforce housing.
With the decrease in the amount of retail square footage and number of residential units, the number of code-required parking has been reduced. City code now requires 521 parking spaces. The modified project will provide 525 parking spaces on site.
The project’s size and location on the West Hollywood-Beverly Hills border make it a highly desirable site. While no agreement has been reached with a prospective tenant, discussions are ongoing with a number of entertainment and technology firms interested in relocating to West Hollywood. We hope to announce a signed tenant(s) sometime in 2021.
Absolutely. An addendum to the environmental impact report will be prepared to analyze the revised project, and public hearings will be held both before the Design Review Subcommittee and Planning Commission to provide opportunities for community input. We look forward to hearing your thoughts!
The vast majority of recent development in West Hollywood has been residential and hotel projects, creating demand for additional office space. Additionally, the pandemic has created a number of different health and safety challenges for our families and communities. Melrose Triangle will help address that shortfall by adding low-rise office space to the market in these times when sensitivities are increased about working in high-rise office environments.
And while the overall number of residential units have been reduced, the project now proposes to include nearly three times as many affordable units as did the entitled project. A total of 41 affordable units are being proposed: 8 units set aside for low-income households, 8 for moderate-income households, and the remaining 25 as workforce units.
Open space is a centerpiece of the design for Melrose Triangle. Large, publicly accessible spaces will anchor each of the project’s three sides and link to a central courtyard. In total the project calls for 24,200 square feet of open space, more than required by code. The project’s design intends to re-brand Santa Monica Boulevard as a pedestrian-oriented main street and aims to attract retailers who will support that urban philosophy. Melrose Avenue and Almont Drive will continue to foster the City’s dedication to design spaces that support art and creativity and similar gestures for the pedestrian experience.
No determination has been made at this time, but the Charles Co. intends to contract with a partner on the affordable units and has begun to have discussions with third-party operators experienced in managing and programming these types of residences.