Saying it's a necessary financial move to see his proposed Bundy Village medical plaza through, developer Michael Lombardi has filed for Chapter 11 on the 12-acre site at Bundy Drive and Olympic Boulevard in West Los Angeles. The filing, entered last week, is intended to head off an expected foreclosure on the land, according to Lombardi, who insists his medical plaza will ultimately be built, although it will be a far different project than originally proposed. "I don't expect to give up the site," he says.
For those just catching up, the plan for a medical plaza at this intersection has resulted in a bloody and expensive Westside battle. On the one side, there's Lombardi, who defends his plan to bring a medical plaza to the neighborhood; on the other side are local homeowners and wealthy developer Kilroy Realty, both of whom cite traffic worries and question if this is the best use of the site.
The fight has led to delays in the project's approvals, and last month, the lender filed a notice of default on the site.
For his part, Lombardi blames Kilroy for the vicious and well-funded fight, saying that lenders are scared off by the controversy. "Every lender we have dealt with has seen the 'Stop Bundy Village' signs," he says, referring to the signs that scattered across the entire Westside. "Kilroy is an extortionist...he has done this to other developers. He would like to have the site." John B. Kilroy, Jr. President and CEO of Kilroy didn't immediately return a phone call, but previously Kilroy execs have defended fighting the project, saying they'd prefer a retail project or office building. The chapter 11 filing was entered on November 3rd and shows total debts of $67 million and assets of $89 million.
· Bundy Village Archives [Curbed LA]