DOWNTOWN LOS ANGELES – At first glance, Fourth and Alameda streets seems like an unwelcoming portion of Downtown. Noisy big-rig trucks often travel down Alameda and there is little pedestrian traffic in the immediate area.
But in late 2005, Peklar Pilavjian, a co-owner of the St. Vincent Jewelry Center on Hill Street, saw the corner as his chance to jump on the Downtown residential bandwagon. He and some partners paid $9 million for a former storage facility on the northeast corner of the intersection. They planned to create 53 for-sale lofts in the 1923 structure on the edge of the Arts District near Little Tokyo.
Then, the recession hit and the market crashed. Banks stopped lending and projects stalled. In the following years the development plans flipped from condos to rentals and back to for-sale status.
Now, things have stabilized, and the story has a happy if long-delayed ending. Pilavjian and his partners finally completed the project, now called Beacon Lofts, in October. Six months later, they have nearly sold out the $20 million project.