New mixed-use development to add 88 housing units, including 9 affordable housing units, to Santa Monica Blvd.

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New mixed-use development to add 88 housing units, including 9 affordable housing units, to Santa Monica Blvd.
New mixed-use development to add 88 housing units, including 9 affordable housing units, to Santa Monica Blvd.

Yale West, LLC, an affiliate of Santa Monica-based real estate firm Roque & Mark Co. adds much needed housing and particularly low income housing units to Santa Monica. “Given the urgency of the housing crisis, we are very pleased that this project was recently approved by the City of Santa Monica. The latest iteration of the project also includes 9 affordable housing units, whereas the original plan had 4 units. The State of California Density Bonus laws allowed an increased density which made it possible to add the additional low income housing units. This is a great example where the State law and local municipality have created zoning rules which are beneficial for the community, the developer and for those in need of low income housing. All parties come out ahead in this case.” President of Roque & Mark Co., Albinas “Mark” Markevicius.

Plans have been refiled to the city with the added affordable housing units and extra level, 2022 is the planned start time on this project. “We are very excited and proud to break ground next year on this project near the Roque & Mark office and adjacent to our Yale St. Urban garden project. Since our office has been on this stretch of Santa Monica Blvd. since 1965, we are very much invested in seeing the area continue to be activated and improved. It will be great to also have a neighborhood serving retail space at this location which will include restaurant/cafe spaces. The future of Santa Monica Blvd. and this east corridor of Santa Monica looks bright!” Vice President of Roque & Mark Co., Zina Markevicius.

“Every year, legislation aimed at addressing California’s chronic housing shortage change the baseline for new developments statewide. In Santa Monica, a developer is upsizing an already-approved project using the updated state density bonus law.

The proposed development, approved by the City of Santa Monica in 2020, is slated for a now-vacant site at the southeast corner of Santa Monica Boulevard and Yale Street. The adopted plan permits the construction of a three-story building containing 46 studio, one-, two-, and three-bedroom apartments above 13,735 square feet of ground-floor commercial space and a two-level, 118-car subterranean parking garage.

A year-and-a-half later, project applicant Yale West, LLC (an affiliate of Santa Monica-based real estate firm Roque & Mark Co.) has refiled plans, now seeking to develop the property with a taller four-story edifice featuring 88 apartments in a mix of studio, one-, two-, and three-bedroom layouts. Plans also call for just under 13,000 square feet of ground-floor commercial space and a 114-car garage – both modest reductions from the approved plan.

In exchange for the density bonus incentives, nine of the apartments are to be set aside as affordable housing, according to architectural plans.

DFH Architects has been retained to design the updated project, which like the original, would be clad in brick and plaster among other materials. A staff report to the Santa Monica Architectural Review Board was complementary of the revised plan, arguing that the additional floor has strengthened the overall design concept, and recommends its approval.

The project is the second mixed-use building planned at the intersection of Santa Monica and Yale, following a similar 50-unit apartment complex from LaTerra development which is now under construction across the street.

The Roque & Mark development is not the first Santa Monica housing project to go taller as a result of new state legislation. In 2020, Community Corp. of Santa Monica tapped into the provisions of AB 1763 to add more housing to the Las Flores affordable housing development in the Pico neighborhood.”

Sharp, Steven. “Developer upsizes proposed mixed-use building at Santa Monica & Yale.” Urbanize Los Angeles (https://urbanize.city/la/post/developer-upsizes-proposed-mixed-use-building-santa-monica-yale).

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