The luxury multi-family project at the flower market has stalled

A 12-story multi-family development at the Southern California Flower Market site has been shut down.

A Los Angeles County Superior Court judge issued a mandatory warrant in June ordering the City of Los Angeles to rescind its approval of plans for the Southern California Flower Growers Inc. mixed-use project. The plans called for a new 12-storey building with 323 luxury multi-family units.

For the project to proceed, it will have to comply with California environmental quality law.

The AIDS Healthcare Foundation sued the city in December 2019 over its approval of the development, arguing that the project’s “environmental impacts were flawed with respect to greenhouse gas emissions and noise impacts.”

“This is a welcome victory in the ongoing battle to ensure the City Council adheres to environmental standards and truly protects and represents Los Angeles’ most vulnerable residents,” said Michael Weinstein, president of the City Council. ‘AHF, in a statement.

Scott Yamabe of Southern California Flower Growers said he was “disappointed with the court’s decision” and would work to amend the project and appear before City Hall in the coming months.

He has been working on the project for six years and estimated that it would take eight years before the project could start.

“It’s no wonder there’s such a shortage of housing,” he said. “It is unfortunate that groups like the AHF, which have nothing to do with us, can use the CEQA and the California courts to delay projects like ours. If we don’t give them what they want, they take us to court,” Yamabe said.

AHF also objected that the project did not contain any affordable housing. The plans, however, provided for moderate income housing.

“We remain deeply concerned that the city council is accelerating luxury developments as well as savings on environmental impact reports, as is being done here,” Weinstein added.
“We pledge to continue to hold our elected municipal officials and municipal departments accountable to ensure they don’t just give our city to deep-pocketed, cash-hungry developers and instead build the buildings and housing we really need.”

The AIDS Healthcare Foundation has been active on the real estate front. Earlier this year, the group bought a 190-unit multi-family apartment building in the Westlake area for $30 million.

The property, known as Sinclair, is located at 2208 W. 8th St.
According to CoStar Group Inc., the AIDS Healthcare Foundation purchased the property with the intention of converting it into low-income housing.

In addition to providing medical care to HIV and AIDS patients, the foundation has also launched housing provider and housing advocacy divisions.

The AIDS Healthcare Foundation has also filed lawsuits against other projects in the past, slowing projects like Crossroads Hollywood.

Terisa K. Carn