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Panel backs bonds for senior high-rises

August 08, 2008|Cara Mia DiMassa | Times Staff Writer

The largest senior affordable rental housing development in the country is about to get a face-lift.

The Community Redevelopment Agency gave the preliminary go-ahead to issue $96 million in bonds for improvements to Angelus Plaza, a cluster of concrete high-rise residential towers on Bunker Hill in downtown Los Angeles.

Angelus Plaza was built in the late 1970s and early '80s as a bridge between the old and new downtown, a retirement community of more than 1,000 units for aging denizens of the then-gritty Bunker Hill district that was demolished in the 1960s to make way for skyscrapers.

Under the terms of the deal, which still must be approved by the City Council, approximately half of the bond money -- $43.6 million -- would be spent on renovations. Residents would be temporarily relocated as the property undergoes improvements that would include upgrades of major mechanical systems, new roofs and a renovation of the buildings' exteriors.

The rest of the money would be placed in a trust fund for creating and preserving affordable housing, both in Los Angeles and elsewhere.

Also as part of the deal, the property would be preserved for affordable housing for 55 years. Under a current arrangement, the covenants designating the property for affordable rental housing are set to expire in 2014.

A spokeswoman for the redevelopment agency said she expected the City Council to approve the deal next month.

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cara.dimassa@latimes.com

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