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Inside the Sunny South LA Prototype Houses Built For $165/SF

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[Photos by Elizabeth Daniels]

Someone is still building affordable housing in Los Angeles, and damn, it's even good-looking. Lehrer Architects designed these two prototype houses in the old school South Park, just south of Downtown (plus three others, in SP, Vermont Knolls, and Watts), at just $165 a square foot, which includes all the landscaping and site work. They're about 1,300 square feet and each designed for classic indoor-outdoor SoCal living; there are three different layouts, but they all have that trellised patio and some kind of yard space. Press materials say the houses take an "aggressively optimistic attitude to [their] neighborhood." (And they'll need it; the two we visited were in pretty blighted surroundings.) The prototypes were developed by Restore Neighborhoods Los Angeles, which originally formed in 2009 to buy up foreclosed properties in low-income neighborhoods and keep the areas stabilized. Four more are ready to go up as soon as there's financing.

· Restore Neighborhood Los Angeles [Lehrer Architects]