A sign depicting a dapper turtle is now the only reminder that the Velvet Turtle once stood at what is now an empty lot on Hill Street in Chinatown, but it just might become the newest site in the Chinatown building boom. (According to the 1981 edition of the LA Times California Cookbook, the VT once made a killer gazpacho.) The decrepit building was finally demolished in March and the owner, which also owns the Megatoys development site and other Toy District properties, tells tells the Downtown News that they're looking into development options. Plans made in 2012 called for a $25-million mixed-use apartment complex, and those are still the "main focus." That development would fit in nicely in bustling Chinatown, where Blossom Plaza (also on the site of a defunct restaurant) is finally underway after years of delay, and will add nearly 240 apartments and 18,500 square feet of retail space next door to the Chinatown Gold Line station; meanwhile, recently-revealed plans would add a gamechanging mixed-use complex that would link up Chinatown with Olvera Street/El Pueblo.
· Shellshocked! Velvet Turtle Is Razed [DN]