The Los Angeles City Council last week unanimously approved a plan by California Landmark to build a $75 million condominium tower at the corner of Barrington Avenue and Wilshire Boulevard.

Construction of the 303-foot-tall high-rise is expected to begin in a year and take about 18 months to complete, according to California Landmark president Ken Kahan.

The 24-story building will contain 78 condos ranging from lofts to two-bedroom units, 10,000 square-feet of office space and 5,000 square feet of ground-floor retail. Kahan voluntarily agreed to set aside five of the dwellings as rental units for low-income families.

California Landmark hasn't decided if it will rent out the office and retail spaces or sell them, Kahan said.

A level of underground parking is included for the customers of the stores, but most of the parking will be above-ground, situated on several stories below the offices and condominiums.

The approvals mark the last chapter of what has been a string of controversial proposals for the site. Roy McNeill, who co-developed the Sherman Oaks Galleria and whose family has owned the property for more than 70 years, petitioned the city to build a 17-story office building in late 2001 but was thwarted by community opposition. McNeil sold the lot to California Landmark in July 2003 for $5 million.

A year later, Kahan proposed two plans for the site, one dominated by residential and the other by offices. Despite a controversial beginning, the condo project received final approvals within eight months. Kahan gained community acceptance by scaling back the proposal from 95 condominiums putting traffic exit onto a side street instead of the already congested Barrington and Wilshire.

"We modified the project significantly in the last couple of months to get where we are," Kahan said. "Overall, it's been an excellent process."

Universal Deal

Broadreach Capital Partners LLC continued its fast pace of Southern California acquisitions last week with a $21 million purchase of 3330 Cahuenga Blvd. in Universal City.

The 104,000-square-foot, five-story office building is 37 percent vacant. Still, Broadreach managing partner David Simon said the Universal City market has been strong and filling the building's space wouldn't be difficult.

"This asset, given its location in a media district that attracts tenants from Hollywood, Burbank and Universal City, is a prime property," Simon said. "I think with the new leasing team we have in place, we should be able to lease it up and sell it as a new investment."


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