Instead of a newsletter, this month UN4LA offers a collection of images from the past year. The newsletter will return in January 2018.
In November the LA Weekly reported that Level Furnished Living, a recently constructed Downtown high-rise that had been approved as an apartment building, was now operating as a hotel. When asked for comment, a spokesperson said that the owner, Onni Group, was working with the City to allow the transient occupancy use.
City Hall claims that the costruction of high-priced high-rises in Downtown is intended to create Transit-Oriented Density, a strategy aimed at getting people out of cars and onto busses and rail. In reality, the MTA's ridership is lower than it was 30 years ago, and traffic appears to be worse than ever.
Many have suggested the City could boost the MTA's ridership by constructing transit-adjacent housing that's affordable for the people who actually use transit. The Meridian Apartments, located near the Vermont/Beverly Red Line Station, seem to be a step in the right direction. The mixed-use complex offers 99 affordable units.
Residents of Leimert Park are worried about gentrification, and with good reason. The construction of the Crenshaw/LAX light rail project been a magnet for speculative real estate investment. The Crenshaw Mall expansion includes almost 1,000 new residential units, but the cost of the units will put them far beyond the reach of residents earning the area median income.
The Hollywood Reporter Building, under threat of demolition to make way for the massive Crossroads Hollywood complex, looks like it will escape the wrecking ball. In a huge victory for preservationists, the City Council recently voted unanimously to designate the building a Historic-Cultural Monument.
Earlier this year the last tenant was evicted from a complex on Weddington in Valley Village to make way for a small-lot subdivision. The Hermitage was a unique collection of rent-stabilized structures that contained an urban farm. The City has approved a developer's plans to demolish the existing buildings to build 26 homes, and even agreed to vacate part of Weddington to sweeten the deal.
The massive Cumulus project, currently under construction at Jefferson and LaCienega, will bring over 1,000 new units to this intersection. Critics of the project are worried that the units will only be affordable to an affluent demographic that's more likely to drive cars than take transit, adding more traffic to an area already plagued by congestion. It should be noted that this photo was not taken during weekday rush hour, but on a Saturday afternoon.
Longtime Venice residents are up in arms about Snapchat's growing footprint in the community. The tech company has taken over an increasing number of buildings, and residents complain that it has displaced local businesses and has used security guards to intimidate people who live in the neighborhood. [Detail of photo by Jennifer Darling.]