Los Angeles Mayor Antonio
Villaraigosa, Aimco executives and
city development officials joined in
the groundbreaking ceremony.

VENICE, CA-City officials, together with Aimco executives and Los Angeles Mayor Antonio Villaraigosa, recently broke ground on the redevelopment of Lincoln Place, a 35-acre apartment community here. The rehabilitation effort is expected to cost $140 million and bring 600-800 jobs, economic development and premier apartment living to this area of Los Angeles.

The redevelopment includes the rehabilitation of 45 buildings with 696 apartment homes and the construction of 99 new apartments on vacant parcels. Phase One of the project was completed in April with the redevelopment of four buildings and 65 apartments for returning residents.

The property, listed on the national and California registers of historic places, was originally constructed between 1949 and 1951; the redevelopment will be done in accordance with the Secretary of Interiors Standards for the Treatment of Historic Properties. The project also will feature sustainable measures to reduce existing energy and water usage by more than 30%.

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Modern amenities at the new Lincoln Place will include a 6,100-square-foot fitness center with state-of-the-art exercise equipment, a rooftop deck, an outdoor pool equipped with speakers for underwater music, and four poolside cabanas. Exterior upgrades will include extensive landscape and site improvements with the addition of 200 new trees, an open park area with a fire pit and picnic spots, and the conversion of Elkgrove Circle into a large central park and community gathering place. The full redevelopment is slated for completion at the end of 2014.

As GlobeSt.com previously reported, in October Aimco closed financing to fund redevelopment for Lincoln Place. The redevelopment is being funded by a $190.7-million FHA-insured loan from lender and servicer Red Mortgage Capital LLC and represents the largest FHA Section 221(d)(4) unsubsidized loan ever insured by the US Department of Housing and Urban Development.

The mayor and L.A. City Councilmember Bill Rosendahl, along with executives from Aimco, HUD the Los Angeles Conservancy and leaders of business and labor groups, took part in a groundbreaking ceremony last week to launch the redevelopment efforts. “We have preserved the architectural character of the property while simultaneously implementing sustainable measures to make the new Lincoln Place an attractive, modern choice in apartment living,” said Aimco’s chief administrative officer Miles Cortez in a prepared statement. “The project will meet the high demand for housing in West Los Angeles and return Lincoln Place and the businesses around it to a thriving community.”

Mayor Villaraigosa added that the city’s priorities of job creation, sustainable living, historic preservation and economic development are reflected in the plans to revitalize Lincoln Place. And Rosendahl added, “While the future of Lincoln Place was once controversial, we are all together now and eager to bring a new vitality to our area. Lincoln Place is destined to become a model of how best to create modern, sustainable apartment living while preserving the community that means so much to Venice residents.”

The Venice submarket has garnered much attention from the commercial real estate community in recent months As GlobeSt.com reported exclusively last week, a private California-based seller has listed a four-property, mixed-use portfolio along Ocean Front Walk in Venice Beach for an asking price of $25 million. Also, in October, an Archstone-sponsored partnership purchased the Frank, a LEED-Platinum certified 70-unit apartment community here, from Gerding Edlen for $56,762,000 and is renaming it Archstone Venice on Rose; the purchase price—$810,886 per unit or $605 per square foot—represents one of the highest prices per unit ever achieved for a class-A multifamily asset in Los Angeles County.