By BARRY LANK
SILVER LAKE – Sunset Junction continues to boom and evolve, with more mixed-used commercial projects in the works on Sunset and Santa Monica boulevards.
The sleek new buildings will bring additional retail and restaurant spaces to Sunset Junction as commercial rents rise, high-end retailers open their doors and developer Frost/Chaddock moves forward with plans to build a trio of large apartment buildings with more ground floor commercial space in the years ahead.
“I think every parcel of vacant or underutilized land (there are very few left) will be developed,” said Clint Lukens of Clint Lukens Realty.
A sign at 3921 Sunset Blvd. heralds the arrival of a new building in a vacant lot between Superior Glass Service and Rough Trade Leather & Gear. Though the developer, CIM Group, declined to provide details, the sign – as well as Urbanize L.A. – indicates it will be two stories high with street-fronting restaurant space and offices on the second floor. The space is scheduled to be available for lease in the second quarter of 2018.
About a block away, CIM is already building an even larger, 14,400-square-foot retail and commercial project at 4121 Santa Monica Blvd. One level of shops, restaurants and perhaps a fitness center and patios will sit on top of a level of parking.
The junction’s funky assortment of shops, restaurants and bars have been joined by some more refined and upscale players over the years. Earlier this month, the opening party for the high-end women’s apparel store Creatures of Comfort, which once operated on Melrose Avenue in West Hollywood, attracted “a star-studded and fashionable crowd,” said Flaunt magazine.
Lukens noted the area may be suffering its share of growing pains along the way.
“I think the retail will continue to see turnover as tenants gauge price points and goods the neighborhood wants to purchase,” he said. “You’ve seen the first wave of retailers start to go out who overpriced themselves. This will continue as rents rise to the highest levels ever tracked for the neighborhood.”
But Roger Merians, sales agent with Coda Brokerage, says the neighborhood has still retained its eclectic character – noting a diverse mix that includes Rough Trade Leathers, Mohawk General Store, Army & Navy Outdoor Supply, and MOTA, the cannabis dispensary that recently replaced Circus of Books.
“There’s such a broad range of things happening on the street,” Merians said, “even with the new people coming in, fabric of the street has stayed unique.”
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