Business & Economy

Irvine-based company buys massive downtown LA site for $130M

An aerial photo shows the plot purchased by Irvine-based developer SunCal. The two long, white buildings that appear diagonally near the center sit on the property and have been used as food distribution centers.
An aerial photo shows the plot purchased by Irvine-based developer SunCal. The two long, white buildings that appear diagonally near the center sit on the property and have been used as food distribution centers.
Courtesy of SunCal

A downtown Los Angeles site the size of 11 football fields has been bought by an Irvine-based developer of master-planned communities.

SunCal bought the property for $130 million, according to Bloomberg, which first reported the story. In a statement to KPCC, SunCal said it cannot confirm that figure, due to a company policy.

The 14.6-acre property lies in the Arts District between Alameda and Mill streets and is bounded on the north by Sixth Street.

The company has no specific plan for the property yet but intends to meet with community stakeholders and the city's planning department to ensure any development "fits with the fabric of the Arts District," David Soyka, SunCal's vice president of public affairs, told KPCC on Wednesday.

In a statement Soyka shared via email, the company suggested the community "could be interested in a variety of different forms of housing types including live/work and creative office space" that "may also include public gathering space."

Soyka said he hoped to present a plan by the end of the year so the company could begin the environmental review process in 2016.

The property currently contains a pair of food distribution warehouses.

Some of SunCal's other developments in Southern California include Ameritage Heights in Fullerton and Mandalay Bay in Oxnard, according to the company's website.

The company is also involved in a competition over what may be the largest development project in the Bay Area, a plan to convert the massive former naval base in Concord into more than 12,000 units of housing and more than 6 million square feet of new commercial property. That project is estimated at about $6 billion, according to the San Francisco Business Times.

Bloomberg points out that SunCal barely survived a partnership with Lehman Brothers Holdings Inc. after the investment bank's 2008 collapse.

This story has been updated.