142-Unit Multifamily Project Proposed at Site of Town House in Los Angeles’ Koreatown Neighborhood

Sheraton Town House, Los Angeles, Koreatown, Lahmon Architects, 639 Commonwealth LP

By Catherine Sweeney

A historic hotel building in Los Angeles’ Koreatown neighborhood could soon be getting a new look, following a recent application submitted to the City. Submitted to the city by an entity affiliated with 639 Commonwealth LP, plans for the project would include new construction of a 142-unit multifamily development and a seismic retrofitting of the historic building.

The project site is located at 639 S. Commonwealth Avenue and is home to the Town House. Built in 1929, the property was once a luxury apartment building before being redeveloped as a hotel. Since 1993, however, the property has operated as affordable housing. New upgrades to the property would allow for continued use as affordable housing, while the newly constructed building would also include affordable housing units.

In total, the seven-story building would provide 15, or 10 percent of the units, be set aside as affordable housing. According to the project findings, nearly 75 percent of the units are also designed as two- or three-bedroom apartments to provide additional housing for families. Overall, the project would provide 25 one-bedroom units with an average size of 563 square feet; 71 two-bedroom units with an average size of 758 square feet; 40 three-bedroom units with an average size of 1,006 square feet; and six four-bedroom units with an average size of 1,303 square feet.

The project also proposes two levels of underground parking with 63 spaces in addition to the 104 existing parking spaces on site. Common space amenities, including a courtyard and rooftop deck.

The more than one-acre site is currently developed with multiple buildings, including the Town House as well as a low-rise building that is home to eight residential units.

With designs for the project from Lahmon Architects, the building would be developed with a facade of uniform, grid-patterned windows. The southern facade of the project, however, would continue the horizontal base of the Sheraton Town House as a way to tie the two projects together.

“The design objective for the project was to invoke a design with a unique presence by responding to its context while creating an opportunity for continued equitable improvements to the neighborhood. As a seven-story object that would be visible across Lafayette Park, the design warranted a more singular, sculptural response while remaining subordinate to the famed, 13-story Sheraton Town House to its south,” the project plans state.