The LEED-Platinum certified New Genesis affordable housing mixed-use project has been rising quietly on Main Street over the past year. A rendering from architect firm Killefer Flammang shows a well-designed, modern 7-story building that will contain 106 units intended as supportive housing, mostly for the formerly homeless in the area, and 25% of the units will go toward working individuals making less than $37,260 annually, according to the Downtown News.
Also, as a result of the influx of market-rate paying residents that have moved into the Historic Core over the last decade (i.e., Main, Spring, and Broadway), the developer of New Genesis, Skid Row Housing Trust, decided to alter the usual format of this affordable housing project by including ground floor retail and moving the social services that would have been usually included on the ground floor to facilities within the building. This decision frees up the ground floor retail space and allows it to be leased out to businesses that cater to the general population living in this immediate area (i.e., loft dwellers).
Many cities have a harmonious mix of market rate apartments and condos with some affordable housing sprinkled in, such as New York or even our local Santa Monica. Often times, and to my surprise, the affordable housing project is designed better than the market rate projects, and people go about their daily lives never knowing the difference. I think it’s a very interesting development here in Downtown LA as people of all socioeconomic backgrounds begin to mix and learn to live with each other. And the New Genesis project will be a welcome addition to the Historic Core’s growing neighborhood.
The project was slated to be done by this month (it started construction in April 2010). However, the building construction is only up to the 4th floor with three more to go. I have a feeling it’ll be early winter before it is completed at this rate.