Construction began Monday on an adaptive reuse project to turn the historic Hollywood Western Building into a 79-unit affordable housing project for low-income seniors.
“Preserving our cultural history and adding to our supply of affordable housing aren’t mutually exclusive goals,” said Councilman Mitch O’Farrell, who represents the district and said he helped secure financing and land use approvals.
The building, which O’Farrell’s office described as an art deco masterpiece, is a Los Angeles Historic-Cultural Monument and is included in the National Register of Historic Places.
“The adaptive reuse of the Hollywood Western Building comes at an important time for our community and city,” said Samir Srivastava, owner and developer of the Hollywood Western Building. “When families are losing hope of ever finding stable housing choices, we are building affordable units, while preserving a historic building that reminds us that our architectural past is worth saving. In doing so, we are sending a crystal clear message to the city that Hollywood believes in building housing that allows for all backgrounds and incomes to live in harmony.”
The Hollywood Western Building was built in 1928 by movie mogul Louis B. Mayer, originally to house the Motion Picture Association of America and Central Casting. It later become a rehearsal space for bands, including Guns N’ Roses. The building most recently was used for government offices, including for O’Farrell.
“This is a great example of how adaptive reuse and historic preservation can work together,” said Lambert Giessinger from Los Angeles City Planning’s Office of Historic Resources. “I’m thankful to make this project a reality and ensure this historic resource is enjoyed by future generations of Angelenos.”
The People Concern will provide on-site services to residents of the building.