New rendering of Vermont/Santa Monica joint development project now available

In January 2017, Metro received an Unsolicited Proposal from Little Tokyo Service Center (LTSC) Community Development Corporation for a joint development at the Vermont/Santa Monica Station.

After completing a review of the proposal per Metro’s Joint Development Unsolicited Proposal Policy, Metro decided to move forward with LTSC’s proposal. In March 2018 the Metro Board of Directors approved entering into negotiations with LTSC, which acquired some adjacent property to the station plaza. LTSC has now submitted its entitlements application to the city of Los Angeles. The next step is for LTSC to get the project approved by the city. After that happens, the Metro Board will consider a long-term agreement with LTSC to build the project.

This is a station that has been open since 1999, but development has been slow to come to the area. Vermont/Santa Monica is also a prime spot for transit — with subway service and very busy bus lines on both Vermont Avenue and Santa Monica Boulevard.

Over the last year and half, LTSC has worked with community groups and Metro to refine the project, which will include approximately 190 affordable residential units for low-income households, with approximately half of those units reserved for families and individuals with special needs.

The project will also include approximately 20,000 square feet of ground floor retail and on-site supportive services for residents. The project will also provide new shade and seating on the station plaza for the more than 4,000 Metro riders who pass through Vermont/Santa Monica each day.

LTSC anticipates starting construction in 2021. More information on the project and process can be found here.

7 replies

  1. In such a transit-heavy, dense urban area, this really, no exaggeration, could/should be 10x bigger! We need more homes for people, why not build them on top of the train station? There’s no reason this couldn’t have 1900 affordable units!

    • 3 very good reasons

      LA’s restrictive zoning. You can’t have 1900 units on that site even with LA’s highest zoning possible.
      The area’s specific plan that limits buildings to 90ft.
      Tax dollars for subsidized housing are in short supply, funding for 1900 units just isn’t available.

  2. I hope at some point Metro will start activating some of the land on and around the stations that they own and charge rent from property managers and retailers. Hong Kong MTR and Singapore MTR are profitable in part because they earn money from development on their land. Not saying that LA Metro needs to be profitable, but perhaps the extra revenue can boost operations and support new infrastructure.