Relevant Group re-envisions residential tower on slim slice of DTLA

Taps Gensler to redesign 329-unit project on Olive Street

Rendering of the project (Los Angeles City Planning / Gensler)
Rendering of the project (Los Angeles City Planning / Gensler)

Relevant Group has a new vision for a parcel on Olive Street in Downtown Los Angeles.

The developer filed plans last week for a 19-story modular building with 329 apartments on a slim mid-block property at 845 S. Olive Street, according to Urbanize.

The development site is owned by Beverly Hills-based Heart Olive, LLC. The firm proposed a 29-story tower there in 2016 and secured approvals for that project in 2019.

Relevant Group’s proposal is entirely new in design. Heart Olive’s tapped Togawa Smith Martin to design their project. It featured a low-rise podium structure with the 29-story tower on one end.

Project's location (Los Angeles City Planning)

Project’s location (Los Angeles City Planning)

Relevant Group brought on Gensler for their project. Gensler’s design has a uniform 19-story elevation. The tower would be clad in amber-colored metal panels and perforated screens.

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The apartments would be a mix of studio, one- and two-bedroom units ranging from 347 square feet to 670 square feet. Any unit of 350 square feet or less is considered a micro-apartment.

The firm is requesting a density bonus and a reduction in on-site parking. Relevant would reserve 36 apartments for “very low-income” households for 55 years.

Relevant also wants 5,300 square feet of ground floor commercial space. A rooftop deck with a pool and lounge area is planned.

The project is Relevant Group’s second proposal in Downtown L.A. this year — in April, the firm filed plans for a 331-unit apartment building, also by Gensler.

The firm is still planning its redevelopment of the the Morrison Hotel in South Park and plans to build a 150-unit affordable complex in Skid Row to replace affordable rooms lost with its Morrison Hotel redevelopment in the South Park district on the other side of Downtown LA.

‘It’s been an eventful year for the firm outside of new projects. Relevant Group had to find “rescue” financing to keep the ball rolling on two boutique hotel projects in Hollywood. A few months later in July, co-founder Richard Heyman left the firm.

[Urbanize] — Dennis Lynch