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Will Los Angeles Turn Into a City Filled with Luxury Ghost Towers?

In Archive by Patrick Range McDonald

The Wall Street Journal recently noted that “the apartment-building boom [in the U.S.] is running into a supply problem,” which is driven by the fact that developers have constructed too much luxury housing. In Los Angeles, though, the City Council continues to obsessively approve luxury towers while housing for the middle- and working-class remains scarce. Will our city end up with luxury ghost towers that few people need or want?

The Journal writes:

Much of the recent apartment construction has been concentrated in luxury buildings in the largest U.S. cities. Now it looks as if these high-end markets may become oversupplied. Indeed, the Federal Reserve’s most recent survey of loan officers showed tightening lending standards for multifamily commercial real estate — an indication that banks may view funding luxury apartments as a riskier proposition.

The paper concludes:

There is still plenty of demand for more affordable rentals, but before the market can start meeting that builders will need to change their focus.

That goes for politicians, too, especially in L.A.

L.A. City Hall has already acknowledged that our city has a huge 12 percent vacancy rate in all housing built in the last 10 years — very little of it is affordable. Yet that hasn’t changed the habits of local politicians. They consistently bend the rules for deep-pocketed developers to make way for more mega-luxury projects.

Take, for example, the “wildly inappropriate” 27-story luxury skyscraper in a working-class section of Koreatown that was approved by Mayor Eric Garcetti and the City Council against the recommendation of the city’s planning commission.

In the meantime, hard-working Angelenos desperately need affordable housing. It’s completely bonkers, right?

Enough is enough. We need to reform L.A.’s planning and land-use system, which is what the Neighborhood Integrity Initiative will do.

Join our community-based movement by clicking to our Act page right now, and by following and cheering our efforts on FacebookTwitter and Instagram. You can also send us an email at [email protected] for more information.

Developers and their politician pals will do anything to defeat our movement and continue their wrong-headed policies. But together, we, the citizens, can create the change that L.A. needs!