Charles Co. dramatically upsizes office portion of WeHo mixed-use project

New plans for Melrose Triangle call for 245K sf of office and fewer residential units

Charles Company's Arman and Mark Gabay with a rendering of Melrose Triangle project and a letter from project manager Jack Kurchian (Arman Gabay, Melrose Triangle)
Charles Company's Arman and Mark Gabay with a rendering of Melrose Triangle project and a letter from project manager Jack Kurchian (Arman Gabay, Melrose Triangle)

Charles Company has drastically upsized the office portion of its planned mixed-use Melrose Triangle project in West Hollywood at a time when much of the Los Angeles office market is struggling.

The new proposal calls for 245,000 square feet of office space, up from its original 137,000 square feet, according to Urbanize. It will also have 41 residential units, down from 76; and 66,000 square feet of retail and restaurant space, down from 82,000 square feet, according to the report.

Charles Company also wants to rent all of the 41 residential units at below market rate. The majority would be so-called “workforce housing,” which typically means units priced for households with incomes between 80 percent and 120 percent of area median income.

The changes were described in a letter by project manager Jack Kurchian and posted to the project’s website. The revamped proposal comes six years after Charles Co.’s project cleared municipal approval.

Kurchian referenced the pandemic in his letter and the need “to adapt to meet future demands.” He added that Covid-19 “has only intensified the need for low-rise creative office space, along with the call for more outdoor open space.”

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Charles Co.’s decision could add years to the new development timelines. The firm started work on the site at 9060 Santa Monica Boulevard in 2018, and by mid-2019 had leveled it.

The new plans do not add square feet to the previously approved plans, Kurchian said in the letter.

Gensler, which designed the approved 2014 project, is also designing the new version.

In November, a judge ruled that the city violated law by rejecting another long-delayed project from Charles Company, District Square, in Arlington Heights. The city is now mulling that project again. [Urbanize] — Dennis Lynch