First renderings revealed for the Weingart Center's trio of Skid Row towers

Moving On Up

First renderings revealed for the Weingart Center's trio of Skid Row towers

First renderings revealed for the Weingart Center's trio of Skid Row towers. Pictured here: Exterior rendering of 554 S. San Pedro St. (Courtesy JWDA)

The first images of the Weingart Center’s Downtown Los Angeles towers have been released by San Diego–based Joseph Wong Design Associates, and the supportive housing towers are shaping up to stand apart from their neighbors. Rising across from each other on 6th Street and wedged between San Pedro and Crocker streets, the two projects (three buildings total) could provide up to 1,000 units of affordable housing on Skid Row once complete.

Wrapping around the Weingart Center’s headquarters at 556 San Pedro Street, the new complexes will help expand the Center’s mission of providing transitionary housing and long-term case management to the neighborhood’s homeless population.

According to the Weingart Center’s website, the 210,000-square-foot first phase of the project at 554 S. San Pedro Street will be split between two buildings and offer 80 percent permanent supportive housing for the formerly homeless, and 20 percent for affordable housing. Besides the new 228 efficiency units and 50 one-bedroom units, renderings show several open-air green areas embedded throughout each tower for residents to enjoy along with accessible rooftop space. The first phase will also include a 6,000-square-foot multipurpose area, recreation and fitness facilities, and be built to an unspecified level of LEED certification. An 18 story U-shaped building that wraps around an interior courtyard is shown in the renderings, while the separate 12 story tower hasn’t been shown in the images released.

Across the street at 600 S South Pedro Street is the 19-story second site. Projected to bring 303 units to the area, 298 of them set aside for very low income individuals, the tower will also incorporate 20,000 square feet of ground floor retail. Featuring a four story wrap-around glass curtain wall at the base and patterned with cladding similar to its nearby partner, the two towers are set to make a splash in the low-slung neighborhood when finished.

While other dedicated low income housing buildings in the area have traditionally been of the less expensive wood frame variety and much shorter, the Weingart Center’s ambitious project is part of a growing trend in the supportive housing world. Skid Row Housing Trust, another human services organization in the area, has also filed plans for a 77,000-square-foot, 14-story development nearby.

Chelsea Investment Corporation is developing the project, and estimated completion for the first phase is in spring 2021 with the exact phasing of each site unknown at this time.