Thursday, January 17, 2008

Genesis 2000 Progress & My Unit

I've gotten in touch with a representative over at Playa Vista Property Management who should be sending me more literature about the Genesis 2000 project "in the next few days," according to her email. Gary Haddock, president of Playa Vista, acquired the mixed-use buildings in hopes of bringing life to this neglected part of southern Downtown in 2000, and it seems that I arrived just as the results of the project began coming to fruition.

Nearly all of the retail spaces at street-level have been filled, and tonight I saw people moving furniture into a previously-empty space. A banner above the door announced (something like) "Marine Trading Post." A short exchange I had with one of the moving men revealed that a permanent tenant would take over within the next couple of months. Through the windows I saw enticing wooden chests and tables that I surely can't afford but will ogle longingly for as long as they're there.

The various businesses that are open or are preparing to open include:

Hilti (retail center for an international tool manufacturer I'd never heard of previously)
Jackson-Hewitt Tax Services
One Stop Market
A Mexican Restaurant (whose name I've yet to learn and whose hours I can't decipher)
Downtown Community Job Center (technically not a part of the 1821-1839 property but is adjacent to it)
C2 Reprographics

I'll be interviewing these tenants to see what brought them here and to gain their insight about what the future holds for this area. I want to see this area developed further, but it's a mystery to me that the Da Capo buildings were built here at all, so far south of the Historic Core and isolated from most older buildings. Some time spent at Central Library's archives should bring some light to that question.

In the meantime, here is a press release from Playa Vista that was posted on LA Downtown News last November.

It claims:
The restored structures at 1821-1839 S. Main St. glow with turn of the 20th century charm. The units enjoy great views, a cooling breeze and are drenched in light.
"Drenched in light" is certainly not an exaggeration-- the amount of natural light was one of the reasons I fell in love with this place. A photo of my unit, taken at approximately 3PM:

The kitchen is through the doorway on the left side of the photo, and the bathroom and a fairly roomy closet are along the same wall. The blue wall in the window is the Famsa Furniture store across the alley. It actually doesn't obstruct the view much, and affords me some privacy from traffic:

It's definitely a space that is intended for single living, but from what I can discern, many of the tenants are small families. The demographic of the 90015 zip code is another subject I plan on examining more closely in future entries.

And I thought I would just talk about where I buy groceries and toiletries.


  1. Are you aware that your apt. complex was recently robbed at gunpoint (at 8pm no less) and the little convenience store was robbed at knife point (& the door was smashed in at that other little store)!!! Not to mention all the car break-ins in the parking lot you pay for. One look at the trash overflowing in the back of the building with the gang-grafitti dumpsters will explain why the other tenants leave their stuff in that big room in your photo. BTW, how much rent do you pay a month?

  2. the little convenience store was robbed at knife point

    I had no idea. This explains the haggard look that has been on the store owner's face lately, the poor man. I'm surprised that he didn't say anything to me.

    The LAPD crime map is down at the moment so I've not been able to look at any other statistics. I didn't move into this place with any delusions; I looked at the crime map before.

    Rent in this particular building ranges from $725-750 per month (parking is $50 extra), and includes water, trash, and cable TV. It's a steal, and I've always understood why it's a steal.

    Thank you for informing me and please feel free to email me for further discussion.