New Life for Simi Valley Real Estate Development After Local Opposition
New housing developments continue to be a bright spot in home sales despite the industry downturn over the last several months. Plans for the Tapo District Loft project in Simi Valley targets millennials who are either renting a bedroom in a house or maybe even living with their parents.
The Simi Valley Planning Commission approved the project in October, but a nearby homeowners association appealed the decision, sending the project to the City Council on Monday.
The Loft units would not only be an affordable option for young people, but also for seniors or the local workforce in Simi Valley. The construction project will offer approximately 60 modest size units of 400-430 sq feet. Community hearings on the proposed plans will continue into early summer.
“What we’re trying to do is position this between what someone pays for renting a room in a house and what someone would have to pay for a one-bedroom apartment, the price of which is astronomical right now in Ventura County,” said Gary Gorian, president of Colton Lee Communities. “This product is basically meant to get people out of their parents’ house or out of renting a room with a bunch of people.”
Residents of the Marketplace, a condominium development adjacent to the proposed site of Tapo District Lofts, opposed the project. The Marketplace Master Association’s appeal cited traffic and parking concerns and stated that these issues would impact public health and safety.
Initially, plans called for a mix of 430-, 560- and 800-square-foot units, but the new plan will mostly contain the smaller 430-square-foot units.
“One of the buildings has been deleted,” Gorian announced at the meeting. “We’ve moved those units over to the other building, will shrink some of the square footage down and lose two units. We’re losing the potential income on those units to limit some of the parking concerns that the HOA had.”
Additionally, certain parking areas will be limited to Marketplace residents only and Tapo District Lofts residents only, and the rooftop deck at the Lofts will have a 10 p.m. noise curfew to avoid disturbing nearby residents.
According to Gorian, the idea for the agreement came from Mayor Keith Mashburn, who recommended that the developer work with the association.