City of LA eyes Mid-Wilshire apartment complex through Project Homekey

Councilman Paul Koretz suggested buying a 53-unit building in works through state homeless housing program

850 La Brea Avenue (, iStock)
850 La Brea Avenue (, iStock)

A Los Angeles councilman has proposed the city as a buyer for a six-story apartment building now under construction in Mid-Wilshire, with an eye on housing homeless residents there.

5th District Councilman Paul Koretz filed a motion saying the city should target the 53-unit building being built at 850 La Brea Avenue for its third round of Project Homekey purchases, Urbanize Los Angeles reported.

“The site…has 53 units and the potential to house 50 to 100 of our most vulnerable Angelenos,” writes Koretz in a recent motion. “Council should explore the potential of converting this property into a Homekey site to serve those in our communities who are most in need of housing and services.”

The mixed-use building at La Brea Avenue and 9th Street is being developed by Element Investments, based in West Los Angeles. The white, triangle-shaped building with Cape Cod-blue accents will include apartments and ground-floor retail space above basement parking.

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Koretz’s motion was referred to the Council’s Housing Committee for consideration, and instructed the City Administrative Officer and Chief Legislative Analyst to identify funding and begin negotiations to buy the building.

Last month, the Housing Authority of the City of Los Angeles voted to spend $508 million on 16 properties for its second round purchases for Project Homekey, a state program that provides funding to buy hotels and apartment buildings for interim or permanent supportive housing.
The 16 properties from Northridge to Harbor Gateway contain 1,276 units, for an average cost of $398,000 per apartment.

At the same time, Los Angeles County targeted another 18 hotels and apartment buildings for a new round of housing purchases for homeless residents for Project Homekey.
Last year, the state allocated $2.75 billion in federal funds to the Project Homekey program through 2023.

[Urbanize Los Angeles] – Dana Bartholomew

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