The Los Angeles Bureau of Sanitation and Goodwill Southern California continue to work toward the development of a mixed-use campus near the L.A. River, according to a report given to the Municipal Facilities Committee.
The proposed Clean Water Campus is slated for a city-owned property at 303 N. San Fernando Road and an adjacent Goodwill site at 342 N. San Fernando Road. Under the proposed arrangement, the project would include the construction of a new office building for the Bureau of Sanitation - a five-story, 169,000-square-foot structure on the city-owned site - and the redevelopment of an existing Goodwill facility with offices, a cafe, and retail space. Additionally, the City of Los Angeles hopes to build approximately 800 parking spaces on the site, up to 200 of which could be used for a proposed development at the nearby Lincoln Heights Jail.
The project was born out of a workplace study commissioned by the Bureau of Sanitation (LASAN) in 2015, which concluded that a new facility would be needed to replace leased space at an office building at 2714 Media Center Drive. The five LASAN divisions housed in the leased space employed 314 staff members in 2016 and 350 staff members by 2018. LASAN anticipates that the divisions will have 480 staff members by 2022. The property at 303 N. San Fernando Road, known as the Humboldt Site, was considered for the Clean Water Campus due to its proximity to the L.A. River.
"Development of the CWC Building at the Humboldt Site offers an opportunity for the City to act as an anchor tenant to facilitate the revitalization of the L.A. River in the Lincoln Heights neighborhood," reads the report.
Goodwill's involvement in the project came about in March 2018, when the non-profit submitted a proposal to the City of Los Angeles to combine the Humboldt Site with its own property to develop both projects together. The larger development site would allow LASAN to "achieve 100% of its planned parking compared to a stand-alone project," and also provide Goodwill with more space to achieve its own redevelopment plans. Additionally, LASAN anticipates that a partnership would allow for faster delivery of the Clean Water Campus.
To partner with Goodwill, the City of Los Angeles will need to move relatively quickly. Goodwill intends to finance its project with new market tax credits, meaning that a deal must be reached by the end of 2019 or in early 2020. Additionally, Goodwill is only willing to let the Clean Water Campus be built on its property if it is allowed to lead project development. Consultants that have worked on the project thus far include Arcadis, CallisonRTKL, and SRK Architects.
Partnering with the City of Los Angeles will also place certain conditions on Goodwill, including the use of prevailing wage labor and compliance with local zoning ordinances such as the Cornfield Arroyo-Seco Specific Plan.
Following the development of the Clean Water Campus and new Goodwill Facility, Goodwill intends to redevelop its existing facilities at 342 N. San Fernando Road with a multifamily residential project featuring 150 units of permanent supportive housing and 50 units of workforce housing. The workforce housing is expected to be available to City employees, and the permanent supportive housing will be targeted for Goodwill employees. The housing development is considered a separate project, and is not part of the proposed partnership with LASAN.
A timeline and budget for construction of the combined project are unclear. The prior study estimated that a smaller version of the proposed Clean Water Campus building would cost $137 million.
The proposed Clean Water Campus is one of a handful of developments planned near the L.A. River in Lincoln Heights.
Last year, developers LPC West and Fifteen Group won the rights to incorporate the former Lincoln Heights Jail into a mixed-use project featuring housing and commercial space.
A few blocks away, 4Site Real Estate is seeking entitlements to build a 100-room hotel and 100 apartments at 181 N. Avenue 21.