Now THIS is an example of architecture serving a purpose for the greater good. Here’s the La Brea Affordable Housing project, which is a mixed use affordable housing project for formerly homeless LGBT youth, people living with disabilities and people living with HIV Aids. The buildings, housing 32 apartments arranged around a shared outdoor courtyard, massed at 50,000 sq ft and located one block north of Santa Monica Boulevard in the West Hollywood, maximizes density while allowing for ample outdoor space. The building provides at-grade parking and commercial space along La Brea Avenue is housed by the AIDS Project Los Angeles (APLA), a non-profit group. The site’s southwest corner expresses that area as a beacon of activity, PLUS it houses the circulation and other shared amenities for the residents.
The La Brea Affordable Housing project was constructed via the West Hollywood Community Housing Corporation, a nonprofit developer, to address a shortage of affordable housing for physically/health-disabled tenants. The City of West Hollywood, The County of Los Angeles and tax credits (among various other sources) provided the project’s funding. This mixed-use structure is located within the central urban fabric of the community, aiming to bring higher density into the urban core of the city and to ensure that residents will have direct access to the available local businesses and services.
The site is close to multiple public transportation options along the busy transit corridor of Santa Monica Boulevard, which minimizes the need for private transportation. The building showcases one of the city’s core values and commitment to environmental responsibility and sustainable/green design by exceeding the city’s Green Building Ordinance requirements. The building’s commercial/retail space is located along LaBrea at the ground level with an outdoor courtyard that provides a garden for residents with access to each provided unit. Plus, each apartment has its own private outdoor space (measuring in at roughly 80 sq ft each) with designated storage room. There is also some common areas for the residents to use, as well as for public use, and laundry facilities and other support spaces are provided in the project.