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VA Signs Lease with the West LA Veterans Collective to Develop 900 Units of Housing for Veterans Experiencing Homelessness

PRESS RELEASE

July 11, 2022

LOS ANGELES , CA — As part of the Department of Veterans Affairs’ efforts to end Veteran homelessness, VA executed an enhanced-use lease on June 29 with the competitively-selected principal developer, West LA Veterans Collective.

This is for the development of a minimum of 900 units of permanent supportive housing for homeless and other at-risk Veterans and their families at the West Los Angeles campus of the VA Greater Los Angeles Healthcare System.

“VA is committed to ending Veteran homelessness in Los Angeles. It is our nation’s duty to ensure all Veterans have a place to call home. This agreement is a key step in meeting the VA’s goal for redeveloping this historic property with at least 1,200 permanent supportive housing units for Veterans,” said Dr. Keith Harris, VA senior executive homelessness agent for Los Angeles.

The execution of this lease builds upon the momentum of Master Plan 2022, which was released in April. Master Plan 2022 details the updated vision for a fully supportive and empowering community for Veterans and furthers VA’s commitment to transform the West Los Angeles campus into a vibrant, sustainable community for Veterans to access supportive housing, healthcare, benefits, employment opportunities and a wide range of services.

“This innovative housing development on VA’s West Los Angeles campus is the largest enhanced use lease in VA’s history and another example of what we can accomplish when we partner and leverage the private sector to develop much needed supportive housing for our Veterans and their families,” said Brett Simms, executive director of VA Office of Asset Enterprise Management.

The enhanced use lease will be for a 99-year term. Under the terms of the lease, VA will turn over certain assets on the West Los Angeles campus to the West LA Veterans Collective, a partnership between Century Housing, Thomas Safran & Associates and U.S.VETS, for the development of permanent supportive housing. WLAVC, through subleases, will develop the housing in multiple phases, consistent with the 2022 Master Plan.

“The execution of this lease represents a new, hopeful day at the West LA VA. The principal developer’s partnership with VA is thriving as we jointly seek to uphold the promise of 1887 and transform this underutilized campus into a beautiful community for our nation’s heroes,” remarked Brian D’Andrea, senior vice president at Century Housing and representative of the West LA Veterans Collective.

Los Angeles has the largest homeless Veteran population in the country, representing close to 10% of the nation’s homeless Veteran population.

“This lease truly paves the way for the West LA Veterans Collective to continue our mission to develop a welcoming campus that our Veterans so rightly deserve,” said Tess Banko, project director for the West LA Veterans Collective. “This development represents more than just a supportive place for Veterans to live, we envision this campus as a transformative space with services and resources that will provide wholistic support and opportunity,” Banko added.

VA has invested in utility infrastructure, conducted environmental and historic preservation analysis, worked on local zoning and permits, and done other preparatory work needed to prepare the property to be suitable for redevelopment.

“This enhanced use lease between VA and the West LA Veterans Collective ensures our continued forward momentum in our ongoing efforts to redevelop this campus and to ensure every Veteran has the housing and services they need to thrive,” said Dr. Steven Braverman, director, VA Greater Los Angeles Healthcare System.

Ensuring all Veterans, regardless of gender, race or orientation, have a safe, secure place to live is incredibly important to VA.

If you know a homeless or at-risk of homelessness Veteran who could use VA services, call the West Los Angeles Campus Welcome Center at (310) 268-3269. Veterans in crisis should call 1 (800) 273-8255 and press 1.

The lease and associated documents can be viewed at https://westlamasterplan.org/documentation/draft-master-plan.

For any media queries, please contact the VAGLAHS Office of Public Affairs at (310) 268-3340 or at VHAGLAPublicAffairs@va.gov, or the West Los Angeles Veterans Collective at info.veteranscollective@gmail.com.

 

ABOUT VA Greater Los Angeles Healthcare System: VAGLAHS is one component of the VA Desert Pacific Healthcare Network (VISN22) offering services to Veterans residing in Southern California. VAGLAHS consists of two ambulatory care centers, a tertiary care facility and eight community-based outpatient clinics. VAGLAHS serves Veterans residing throughout five counties: Kern, Los Angeles, San Luis Obispo, Santa Barbara, and Ventura. There are approximately 1.4 million Veterans in the VAGLAHS service area. For more information, visit us at www.losangeles.va.gov. Veterans in need can call the VA hotline toll-free at 877-4-AID-VET.    

ABOUT West Los Angeles Veterans Collective: WLAVC is a nonprofit organization dedicated to transforming the North Campus of the West Los Angeles VA into a thriving community, through the development of housing and supportive services for more than 3,000 Veterans and families. Established and led by partners Century Housing, Thomas Safran & Associates and U.S.VETS, WLAVC is deeply committed to the successful transition of military Veterans and their families through the provision of service and amenity-enriched housing that promotes recovery, wellness, and a more hopeful future. For more information, visit us at www.wlavc.org or follow WLAVC on social media!: Web/FB/IG/Twitter/LinkedIn.

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