Three-story building would include 167 beds
By Dolores Quintana
A permanent homeless shelter with 167 beds is being planned at the West LA Armory.
A plan to redevelop the West Los Angeles Armory Building into permanent supportive housing that was approved in 2016 is finally starting to move forward as reported by Urbanize Los Angeles. This plan could bring 1,200 units to the West Los Angeles VA Campus of desperately needed affordable housing. The campus is in the West Los Angeles area, close to the 405 freeway, Westwood and UCLA. This move is intended to provide unhoused people with a new set of services and homes on the southern edge of the VA Campus.
The Armory was built in 1964 and was previously used as a winter shelter for ten years. The shelter only held about 160 beds, for mixed-gender occupants, which wasn’t the fullest use that the shelter could provide. The Los Angeles Department of Health Services has released a notice of the intent to convert the Armory to provide long-term supportive shelter.
The current project’s plan is for a three-story building that would be built to the south of the armory and would hold 167 beds. The renderings for this part of the project are for a low-rise building with a modern style. The building would have separate male and female dormitories, outdoor patios, a library, and recreation and dining areas.
According to the plan document, the project would require that “a small parking structure would be constructed in the northeast corner of the Armory site to accommodate replacement parking. Access to the parking structure would be via a new driveway along the northern side of the site. The National Guard is requiring the parking structure, which would include parking to replace that displaced by the shelter (and the garage itself) as a condition of the lease with the County. Approximately 50 spaces would be lost at the shelter site and the parking garage itself would require the removal of a similar number of spaces. The parking structure would be approximately 150 feet by 180 feet and two stories tall. The parking structure would only replace the parking area lost to the shelter.”
The shelter would employ between 50 to 55 staff and be open 24 hours a day. Construction is estimated that it would take approximately 16 months to complete and construction could begin in 2023.