Commission Approves Plan For Multi-Family Residential Project

The Long Beach Planning Commission unanimously approved two projects during its June 7 meeting: a three-restaurant redevelopment of the southeast corner of Lakewood Boulevard and Willow Street and a multi-family project at 1400-1452 Long Beach Blvd. Both projects passed with four votes, as three commission members were absent from the meeting.


The commercial project will replace Spires Restaurant and a portion of the American Tire Depot. The project calls for the development of two pads for the construction of three restaurant tenants. Pad 1 will consist of a 4,238-square-foot building that will house two tenants, one of which has been identified as a Starbucks with a drive-thru lane, and the other an unidentified fast casual restaurant. Pad 2 will consist of a 2,516-square-foot building that will become a Jack in the Box with a drive-thru lane.

During its June 7 meeting, the Long Beach Planning Commission approved the development of a 65-unit residential project at 1400-1452 Long Beach Blvd. (Rendering courtesy of the City of Long Beach)


The existing tire shop is 11,000 square feet but will be reduced to 5,073 square feet and maintain its current use. The new buildings will feature a combination of exterior finishes, including smooth stucco, wood siding, decorative tile, metal siding and metal awnings. The project includes 93 parking stalls in all, and new landscaping throughout.


The multi-family project proposal on Long Beach Boulevard includes 65 residential units in a four-story-plus mezzanine building that totals nearly 69,000 square feet of living space. The project site is currently developed with surface parking lots and auto repair and moving truck rental businesses.

The Long Beach Planning Commission unanimously approved plans to redevelop the southeast corner of Lakewood Boulevard and Willow Street, which is currently occupied by Spires Restaurant, during its June 7 meeting. The current restaurant and part of an existing tire shop would be demolished to make way for a Starbucks with drive-thru, an unidentified fast-casual restaurant and a Jack in the Box with a drive-thru. (Site map courtesy of the City of Long Beach)


The project includes 2,100 square feet of ground-floor commercial space and the residential units would be for sale. Unit sizes range from 720 square feet to 1,705 square feet and the building has a mix of one-, two- and three-bedroom floor plans. The complex will also include a total of 90 parking stalls, with 36 garage stalls, 32 covered stalls and 22 open stalls. The building includes 3,450 square feet of common and shared open space, such as a roof deck, a media and game room and a fitness room.


Included with the project is the construction of a 12,000-square-foot parklet “from the eastern edge of Long Beach Boulevard to the southerly prolongation of the eastern property line of the project site,” according to city documents. The parklet will close 14th Street to vehicular traffic in that area to provide active and passive open space for the community and future residents.


New Leases And Business Reopenings

The following is a list of new leases and business reopenings obtained from CBRE Senior Vice President David Smith, Lee & Associates Commercial Real Estate Services Principal Jeff Coburn, and Bixby Knolls Business Improvement Association Executive Director Blair Cohn:

• Geosyntec Consultants signed a lease for nearly 7,000 square feet of space at 211 E. Ocean Blvd. to open its first Long Beach office location, according to Smith. The space is an expansion of their Huntington Beach office, with a seven-year lease, Smith said. The company plans to open the office on August 1, he added.

• Crunch Fitness is opening a new Long Beach location in the former 24 Hour Fitness located at the City National Bank building, 100 Oceangate, according to Smith. The 24,500-square-foot, state-of-the-art gym is set to open tomorrow (June 20). The grand opening party will run from 10 a.m. to 4 p.m. and feature music, vendors, enrollment specials and raffle prizes.

• First Choice Loan Services Inc. signed a lease for 2,500 square feet at 3910 Cover St. in Douglas Park, according to Coburn. The company is relocating from its current Long Beach location at 6695 E. Pacific Coast Hwy., Suite 250, in the Marketplace.

• The R.O.A.D.S. Foundation signed a 7,000-square-foot lease at 4800 E. Los Coyotes Diagonal, for the former East Long Beach Police Station property owned by the Automobile Club of Southern California, Coburn said. The company is currently located at 121 S. Long Beach Blvd. The foundation did not immediately respond for comment and it is unknown if the Long Beach lease is for an expansion or relocation.

• After suffering a fire in December 2016, George’s ‘50s Diner at 4390 Atlantic Ave is currently in a soft-opening phase, with a planned grand opening on June 23, according to Cohn.


Cherry & Spring Retail Center Nears Completion

Construction of the new retail strip center on the northeast corner of Cherry Avenue and Spring Street should be completed in the next several weeks, according to Robert Park, who is handling the leasing of the property. Though no leases have been finalized, Park said three should be announced soon – a 2,500-square-foot convenience store, a 1,500-square-foot sandwich shop and a 1,500-square-foot chicken restaurant. The property has two additional storefronts with no currently interested parties.


Summer Deal Making Series For Commercial Real Estate

The Long Beach Commercial Real Estate Council is featuring Tyson Sayles of Ensemble Real Estate Investments as a speaker during its Summer Deal Making Series during its member breakfast July 13. Sayles, Ensemble’s principal for residential and mixed-use properties, will focus on the company’s Sonata Modern Flats development, which features 112 residential units located at 207 Seaside Way. The series offers members and guests “exclusive and unique ground-floor retail deal making opportunities for projects in development that require leases to be signed within the next 120 days,” according to the council. The event is being held at The Grand, 4101 E. Willow St., and begins at 7:30 a.m. To register for the event, visit


Construction Costs See Large Increase In May Due To New Tariffs

Construction costs increased in May due to steep increases in building and road materials, particularly those subject to new tariffs that could drive prices even higher, according to the Associated General Contractors of America’s analysis of new U.S. Labor Department data.


“Prices jumped at double-digit annual rates for metals, lumber and plywood, and diesel fuel, while ready-mixed concrete, asphalt paving and roofing materials also had unusually large increases,” Ken Simonson, the association’s chief economist, said in a prepared statement. “The cost of all goods used in construction rose 8.8% from May 2017 to May 2018, the steepest annual increase in nearly seven years.”


Data indicates that the producer price index increased 17.3% for aluminum mill shapes, 13.9% for lumber and plywood, 13.8% for copper and brass mill shapes and 10% for steel mill products from May 2017 to May 2018. Additional increases were seen in the price of diesel fuel, asphalt felts and coatings, ready-mix concrete, and paving mixtures and blocks.


The association noted that the impacts of the U.S. imposed tariffs on steel and aluminum imports from Canada, Mexico and the European Union have not been reflected in the most recent data. The producer price index for all materials used in construction projects rose 2.2% in May alone and 8.8% in the last 12 months, the steepest year-over-year increase since July 2011, the association added.


“Considering the impact that the mere threat of tariffs has had on materials prices and demand, prices are likely to increase further as the new trade restrictions come online,” Stephen Sandherr, the association’s chief executive officer, said. “Forcing contractors to pay more for materials and wait longer to receive them will make construction more costly and slower.”


Stepp Commercial Sells Complex For $4.88 Million

Stepp Commercial Principal Robert Stepp and Vice President Todd Hawke represented the seller, a private LLC, in the $4.88 million sale of San Antonio Apartments at 1090 E. San Antonio Dr. “The affluent Bixby Knolls is a highly desirable residential area in Long Beach,” Stepp said. “The property is advantageously positioned across the street from the beautiful Bixby Knolls Park. The buyers plan to add value to the property, which offers a potential 15 percent rental increase in a non-rent-controlled market.” Built in 1948, the two-story, 20-unit apartment complex consists of 16 one-bedroom units and four studio units. The transaction closed at a price of $243,750 per unit and the buyer was a private investor.


Bogie Investment Group Completes $6.5 Million Multi-Family Transaction

Marcus & Millichap’s Bogie Investment Group founder Steve “Bogie” Bogoyevac and Senior Associate Shane Young represented the buyer, a local investor, in the more-than-$6.5 million sale of a multi-family property at 3121 E. Marquita St. The Encino office of Marcus & Millichap represented the seller. The 15,638-square-foot building consists of 24 units on a 0.34-acre lot. The 1961 building includes 20 one-bedroom/one-bathroom units, three two-bedroom/one-bathroom units, and one three- bedroom/two-bathroom unit in the Bluff Heights neighborhood. The complex features 12 single-car garages, an inner courtyard and on-site laundry.


NAI Capital Sells Multi-Family Property For $1.4 Million

NAI Capital Multifamily Services Group Vice President Mario Gandara and Associate Ramzy Prado represented the seller, a private investor, in the $1.4 million sale of an apartment complex at 1432 Gaviota Ave. “Through our extensive marketing techniques, experience and knowledge of the market we were able to produce multiple offers,” Prado said. “We created an auction environment to get the best and highest price. The final cap rate was a 4.29% and a 13.33 gross rent multiplier.” The transaction is a record-setting sale on price per square footage for 1920 construction in Long Beach, Gandara added. The single-story complex consists of nine studio units and a single one-bedroom unit. The complex is 100% occupied.


Loiter Pop Up Galleries

On June 9, Loiter Galleries announced the grand opening of its newest pop-up collaborative, “Loiter Pop Up Galleries.” The art gallery will be located at 375 N. Promenade at The Streets in Downtown Long Beach into the summer. The space is led by Long Beach artists Vinny Picardi and Monica Fleming, and it provides local artists a place to showcase their work for little or no cost. “We will be the debut artists of what will hopefully be the first of many pop up gallery showcase opportunities for Long Beach artists in temporarily available storefronts,” Picardi and Fleming said in a joint statement. “As cities redevelop, available gallery space is out of reach for most artists. Our goal is to ensure Long Beach artists will always have a venue to present their work.” Pictured from left: Picardi; Jennifer Kumiyama, a representative from the office of 1st District Councilmember Lena Gonzalez; and Fleming. (Photograph courtesy of Pier Communications)


Brandon Richardson is a reporter and photojournalist for the Long Beach Post and Long Beach Business Journal.