AvalonBay-Abode Communities Team Selected to Develop West LA Civic Center Site

Mixed-Use Project Proposes Equitable Housing Opportunities Combined with Neighborhood-Serving Retail and Restored Municipal Uses


WEST LOS ANGELES — AvalonBay Communities and Abode Communities have been selected to revitalize and redevelop West Los Angeles Civic Center site.


As designed by KoningEizenberg Architecture and landscape architect OLIN, West LA Commons will bring vibrant neighborhood-serving retail, restored municipal uses, publicly accessible open space, and a wide range of housing options to this highly desirable West LA location. The 8-acre project site, bound by Santa Monica Boulevard, and Corinth, Iowa, and Colby Avenues, is currently home to municipal offices, the Felicia Mahood Multipurpose Senior Center, and a closed courthouse.


“We are excited to have been selected as the development team for this vital piece of land on the Westside,” said Mark Janda, Senior Vice President of Development for AvalonBay Communities. “We are immensely proud of the work our team has done to envision an innovative project that honors the site’s history, while reimagining the civic center for the new century.”


“Our vision for West LA Commons will bring equitable housing opportunities to a highly-resourced neighborhood on the Westside,” said Robin Hughes, President & CEO of Abode Communities. “The proposed mix of residential, commercial, and civic uses will ultimately create a vibrant, interconnected neighborhood core for the community and residents alike.”


The development proposes 926 housing units, including 431 affordable and moderate-income units (including family, senior, and supportive units) and 495 market-rate apartments.


A 73,400-square-foot municipal office building restores the site’s original intent as a place for civic engagement and connects to a redeveloped Felicia Mahood Multipurpose Center, a 20,900-square-foot community center serving seniors living in West Los Angeles.


More than 41,000 square feet of retail and restaurant space, including a new community art gallery/flex-use space at the Courthouse Arts Pavilion, extends Santa Monica Boulevard’s pedestrian corridor while linking the site’s core community uses to the neighborhood at-large.


Some 118,000 square feet of publicly accessible open space includes “The Plaza,” the site’s community core featuring the historic Bandstand and flexible use space.


LA County Supervisor Sheila Kuehl expressed enthusiasm about the plan as proposed.


“AvalonBay and Abode Communities have extensive experience developing mixed-use housing and retail projects in Los Angeles, and successfully engaging local residents throughout the development process,” said Kuehl. “At the end of the day, this project is sure to be a welcome new asset in the community.”


Under the terms of the process outlined by LA County and the City of Los Angeles last year when they issued a Request for Proposals from developers, the AvalonBay-Abode Communities team will now enter into an Exclusive Negotiating Agreement with the two government bodies. That process, which is expected to conclude in March, will establish certain parameters for the proposed project, including project scope and elements and the community engagement process.


LA City Councilman Mike Bonin noted that an extensive community outreach process lies ahead for the project, adding that the plans for West LA Commons already have been refined to reflect community feedback by scaling back the originally proposed 23-story tower to no higher than 8 stories.


“We look forward to ensuring continued community input is central to the project that AvalonBay and Adobe Communities will be working on,” said Bonin. “The community’s ideas will continue to be important in the next phase of this project.”


Janda and Hughes say the West LA Commons project team eagerly anticipates undertaking a dialogue with the community about their proposal.


“We look forward to presenting our plan to the community and stakeholders as we move forward in an inclusive process,” Janda said.


“We know this site means a great deal to the surrounding neighborhood,” added Hughes, “and we fully intend to deliver a meaningful development that will contribute to this Westside community for decades to come.”