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Shiny Downtown Tower Is Out, New Park Is In

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At one point, in another financial universe, an award-winning shiny condo/hotel project, designed by local architecture firm Johnson Fain, was planned for a plot of land at 4th and Spring streets (in the area between the Rowan Lofts and the El Dorado project). Today comes news from Councilwoman Jan Perry's office that the city has purchased the .8 acre land with the help of quimby fees (fees paid by area developers) and the plot will be used as a park. There's no ground-breaking scheduled, according to Eva Kandarpa, spokesperson for City Councilwoman Perry, but there are plans to hold public meetings to get input from locals about the project. "People could ask for part of the park to be a dog park, for instance," says Kandarpa. It'll be interesting to see how the park affects the two developments, and whether the green space will make the two buildings more appealing to buyers. The purchase should be completed by March. Meanwhile, according to the press release, the city purchased the plot for a "fair market value price of $5.6 million dollars, which is 12.5% below the September 2008 appraised value for the parcel."

Councilwoman Jan Perry & Recreation And Parks Announce Plans for New Downtown Park:

Location at 4th and Spring Currently Under Acquisition with Help of Quimby Funds

Los Angeles- Councilmember Jan Perry and the Department of Recreation and Parks (RAP) announced that the City is currently acquiring a .8 acre of land at 418-438 Spring Street to develop a downtown neighborhood park. The announcement was made during a Quimby task force meeting at City Hall at 9:00 a.m. on Wednesday, January 14.

The .8 acre parcel at 4th and Spring streets is currently vacant and sits in a prime location in the heart of the Historic Core in downtown. Using Quimby funds, the city has agreed to purchase the land at the fair market value price of $5.6 million dollars, which is 12.5% below the September 2008 appraised value for the parcel. Quimby funds are collected by the City from developers for the purpose of creating park space. Escrow is expected to close in March of this year.

"Downtown Los Angeles is a vibrant place with a growing and thriving residential community. I recognize the need for urban, neighborhood parks and have been working hard with the help of the Quimby task force to make this vision a reality," said Councilwoman Jan Perry who convened the task force. "I look forward to developing this park for generations of Los Angelenos to enjoy."

The Quimby task force was convened by Councilwoman Perry's office in Spring of 2008 to address the need for more community-based parks in downtown and is comprised of members from the office of Councilwoman Perry, RAP, the Department of General Services, Chief Legislative Analyst, City Planning Department, Downtown Los Angeles Neighborhood Council, and other downtown residents and stakeholders The taskforce has been instrumental in helping to identify potential land for parks and will play an important role in helping to implement the vision of the community through this new park.

"A new park is always a cause for celebration," according to Jon Kirk Mukri, General Manager of the Department of Recreation and Parks. "Parks enrich our lives in so many ways and the City has a commitment to healthy parks and increased green space. We're pleased to be able to use Quimby funds to acquire this new downtown park.