Sawtelle Me Five Stories

Lorcan O'Herlihy Architects designs a mixed-use campus in West Los Angeles

Large cuts in the building's massing will signify the entrances to the building's retail spaces on the ground floor. (Courtesy LOHA)

Sawtelle, a low-rise district on the West side of Los Angeles, is about to receive a new development that is sure to change the neighborhood. Real estate development company CIM Group is behind the five-story, mixed-use complex set to rise on the 2.6-acre plot designed by local firm Lorcan O’Herlihy Architects (LOHA) on Santa Monica Boulevard between Stoner and Granville Avenues. Construction on the project has already topped out and is expected to be completed within the next two years.

The project will include subterranean parking, 16,600 square feet of ground-floor retail, and 154 apartment units on its top four floors. The project will include many amenities for its residents, including co-working spaces, a community lounge, a pool deck, and a gym. The housing section will be broken up into units of varying sizes, from studios to three-bedroom single-family homes. “This building is the final piece of a significant infill development that is bringing much-needed housing to West Los Angeles,” said Shaul Kuma, cofounder & principal at CIM Group. “We believe the community will benefit from quality housing and community-serving retail located along a major transportation corridor and in proximity to jobs.”

A Lorcan O’Herlihy Architects-designed residential campus with a pool

The site is broken up to make room for a swimming pool and other residential amenities above the complex’s ground floor. (Courtesy LOHA)

Much like the KFA and Le0ng Leong-designed LGBT Center several miles East on Santa Monica Boulevard, the site of the new development will be broken up into several distinct buildings. The project was designed in the style of a campus to ensure that every unit can receive sunlight and unobstructed views of the city while also responding to its context by visually breaking up its massing through cuts, twists, and rotations. All of the housing units will feature floor-to-ceiling windows that can be read as vertical bands from the street, effectively making the building seem even more substantial at first glance. Large cuts in the massing will both signify the entrances to the retail spaces on the ground floor through the creation of built-in canopies, and will further define each building’s roofline to create a dramatic street presence.

LOHA has been behind several apartment buildings across Los Angeles in an effort to densify the city’s housing, including a porous supportive housing project in South Los Angeles and a top-heavy tower in Hancock Park.

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