Unable to reach a leasing agreement with the Lusk Co., the county is looking for a new developer for a proposed business park on the grounds of Rancho Los Amigos Medical Center in Downey.
The project, which calls for about 150,000 square feet of office, warehouse and restaurant space, represents the first half of the county's plan to develop the southern portion of the hospital's grounds and consolidate medical facilities on 55 acres retained for hospital use north of Imperial Highway.
The county had been negotiating with the Irvine-based Lusk Co. for about eight months, but wanted a more lucrative leasing agreement than the company was willing to consent to. "We weren't satisfied with the economic return that Lusk was prepared to give the county," said Bill Kreger, assistant administrative officer for the county. The county intends to lease the southern campus on a 66-year basis, with new buildings reverting back to county ownership at the end of the lease.
To replace Lusk, the county Board of Supervisors has voted to put the business park proposal back out to bid. Kreger said he expects a good response, predicting that the renewed search for a developer would only set the project back by about six months. In the meantime, the county is continuing leasing negotiations with Lincoln Property Co. for development of an industrial park, the second half of the hospital project.