The Burbank Town Center Plan contains several components. One component is the revitalization of the Burbank Town Center Mall that is currently underway to refresh the Mall’s presentation. Secondly, in addition to the ongoing Mall improvements, the owners have submitted an application to the City to replace some of the adjacent ancillary retail structures with a mix of complementary uses, including residences, a hotel, neighborhood-serving retail, and a new open space plaza (Project). The Project’s comprehensive design will create a new downtown neighborhood where residents can live, work, shop, and play.
The Burbank Town Center site consists of several fully developed blocks within Downtown Burbank, including the Burbank Town Center Mall, the now-closed IKEA store, retail, restaurant and movie theater uses, and three multi-level parking structures. In general, the property’s physical boundaries are Burbank Boulevard, Third Street, Magnolia Boulevard, and the Golden State Freeway (I-5). The Property is zoned Planned Development No. 89-4 (PD 89-4), which the City Council approved in 1989. The Project proposes to amend PD 89-4 to be consistent with the City’s recently adopted General Plan, Burbank 2035.
No. However, the renovated Burbank Town Center Mall will play an important role serving residents of the proposed neighborhood as well as other visitors. Scheduled to be complete in December 2017, the Mall is undergoing a $60 million refresh to create a modern shopping experience by providing a more welcoming and seamless connection between the Mall and Downtown Burbank. In addition, the Mall renovation will include an outdoor dining terrace on the third level facing Downtown Burbank with unmatched views of the Verdugo Mountains and access off Magnolia/San Fernando via an exterior escalator. As a part of ongoing business operations and tenant improvements, there may be additional upgrades to occur in the future.
The Burbank Town Center site is located in Downtown Burbank. Burbank 2035, the city’s General Plan adopted by the City Council in 2013, envisions Downtown Burbank as the center of the city where people live, work, and shop. “Downtown Burbank is the civic, shopping, dining and entertainment center of the city,” the plan reads. “As a community center with transit access, it is appropriate for Downtown to have a higher allowable intensity of development than other areas of the community.”
The proposed neighborhood fulfills the city’s stated goals for the downtown area by:
By redeveloping the Project site to include much-needed housing, a hotel, and a town center, neighborhood services will be provided while enhancing the existing commercial and entertainment uses that Burbank residents currently enjoy.
In comparison to much of the surrounding region, Burbank has lagged in the production of new housing units in recent years, adding only 55 residential units since 2011, according to the city’s Community Development Department, while both the population and the number of people working in Burbank have increased during that same period of time.
Burbank is a major employment center in the region and is expected to continue to grow. Burbank 2035 cites the current number of approximately 100,000 jobs to increase by nearly 15% by 2035. When compared to the approximately 44,000 housing units currently in the City, this highlights the City’s employment‐rich community is lacking in housing options for Burbank residents.
The Project site is the ideal location to build new housing as part of a new neighborhood within a revitalized Downtown Burbank as called for in the city’s general plan because it is one of the few sites in Burbank capable of handling increased density without having any immediate impact on adjacent single-family neighborhoods. The Burbank 2035 general plan update outlines a number of policy goals that call for the development of mixed-density and mixed- housing types in commercial areas like Downtown Burbank.
The goal of the policies is multifold:
“The area has direct and convenient access to public transit including buses and trains, and the compact nature of the street grid facilitates walking and easy pedestrian access,” the Burbank 2035 plan reads. “The area is well buffered from residential neighborhoods, so any potential effects of higher intensity development on these neighborhoods are minimized.”
The area’s convenient central location, its links to transit, including bus and Metrolink service, and its proximity to a multitude of dining, shopping, and entertainment options make Downtown Burbank a highly desirable place to live. Although Burbank is home to a large and growing number of employers, its housing production has lagged and many of the people working here are often forced to live elsewhere due to the low supply of available housing. If Burbank does not provide sufficient housing for people that work in Burbank, we risk losing amazing companies to nearby cities that will be quick to lure our jobs. Adding a complementary mix of uses and improving the pedestrian atmosphere will make Downtown an even more attractive place to live.
Seven new structures are being proposed as a part of the proposed mixed-use Project. The heights range from about 88 to 98 feet for the five 7-story apartment buildings, to about 97 feet for the 7-story hotel, to about 205 feet for the 15-story condominium building (which falls within the currently approved and allowable 205-foot height limitations within Downtown Burbank, PD 89-4 and the General Plan).
Yes. The existing free parking for the Project will be regulated by a planned development, which will meet the parking requirements adopted by the City Council and will remain free to all Burbank Town Center patrons. The Project includes an addition of more than 1,900 parking stalls and will maintain the three parking garages that currently serve the Burbank Town Center.
The location of the former IKEA store at 600 North San Fernando Boulevard, known as Area 4 in the Project application, will be the site of a mixed-use residential-retail complex. Four seven-story buildings will house approximately 765 apartments in a variety of unit types and 37,420 square feet of neighborhood-serving retail-restaurant space will front San Fernando Boulevard. It will include approximately 1,332 new parking stalls.
On the site of the Office Depot along Third Street, known as Area 1 in the Burbank Town Center Plan, is proposed a 7-story apartment building with 259 apartments and four levels of parking (three underground and one at grade).
On the site of Corner Bakery at 800 N. San Fernando Blvd., known as Area 2, a 15-story multi-family building with 70 for-sale condominiums and seven levels of parking (three underground and four above grade). This property would be a new addition to the Project Site and is proposed to be covered under the PD 89-4 to be amended, as part of the Project.
Where the California Pizza Kitchen and Chevy’s now are on the west side of North San Fernando Boulevard, known as Area 5, a 200-room hotel with ground-floor commercial space is proposed. The hotel would be a 7-story structure. The adjoining parking garage and movie theaters would remain in place.
Areas 3, 6 and 7 do not include any redevelopment proposals in the Project. However, as a part of ongoing business operations and tenant improvements, there may be some upgrades to occur in the future.
The Project site includes several private street segments – North San Fernando Boulevard between Grinnell Drive and the Mall and East Cypress Avenue between North First and North Third Streets, which entails Area 8 under the proposed Project. This area would consist of the existing roadways, sidewalks and proposed open space to be used for a variety of community uses such as farmers’ markets, a performance space, exhibits, outdoor movie screenings, and a holiday ice skating rink.
No. The current zoning and General Plan allow 87 residential units per acre to be built. The Project proposes to build 29.3 residential units per acre. Under the permitted density, 3,250 units could be built at the property. The Project proposes 1,147 units at the Property.
As part of its review of the Project application, the City requires preparation of an environmental impact report (EIR) to be circulated to the public for review and comment and thereafter considered by the City Council. The City recently hired a team of expert consultants to prepare the EIR, which will include a comprehensive traffic study that will fully analyze the potential effect of the project on intersections, streets, and freeways. If any significant impacts are projected to occur, mitigation measures to alleviate those impacts will be proposed as a part of the EIR. From a planning perspective, the addition of residential units to the area will place homes in direct proximity to one of the most transit-rich parts of Burbank with multiple means of alternative transportation available within a quarter- to half-mile radius, including the Metrolink station, planned bike lanes, and local and regional bus lines.
The new buildings will incorporate sustainability goals in its land use and siting, water efficiency, drought-tolerant landscaping, and building materials. Wherever feasible, sustainable measures will be incorporated that would be comparable to a LEED Silver certification. In addition, the Burbank Town Center has been using reclaimed water from Burbank Water & Power since 1991. The Mall renovation includes new common area energy-efficient HVAC units and parking garage lighting fixtures. Both of these enhancements will reduce the Mall’s energy footprint.
Yes. A 21,900-square-foot open space plaza will be built as part of the Project in place of the existing IKEA outdoor tent area at Cypress and North San Fernando. The plan is to program the open space so that it is regularly the site of community events, such as a farmers’ market, movie nights, musical performances, an ice skating rink, and other special events. Surrounded by retail kiosks and new restaurants, the open space is designed to function as the new gathering spot for Downtown Burbank. The goal is to create a walkable, central gathering place for the neighborhood and community while preserving Burbank’s unique character, small-town charm, and quality of life.
The Project has been designed to be a pedestrian-oriented environment supported by the wide, tree-lined sidewalks, wayfaring signs, and enhanced connections to nearby transit stops. According to Walk Score, a nationally recognized resource used to assess walkability, Downtown Burbank scores 90 on the 100-point scale and is considered a “Walker’s Paradise” where many errands do not necessitate driving. The Project will further foster that walkability since it locates housing near employment centers, schools, major employers, city facilities, and the 400-plus businesses located in downtown Burbank.
CC Development Partners, a joint venture between CAPREF Manager, a Dallas-based real estate development and investment firm, and Crown Realty and Development, a Costa Mesa based developer, is the project developer. Heading up the development team are Lance W. Taylor, CCIM, of CAPREF and Jim O’Neil of Crown. Jim O’Neil has years of experience developing commercial and residential projects in Burbank.
LDA has designed the Mall remodel. Located in Burbank and founded in 1996, LDA design group is a full-service architectural firm working closely with developers and retailers to create inspiring built environments across the country and abroad. For more information, please visit http://ldadesigngroup.com/.
TCA Architects has designed the residential portion of the Burbank Town Center project. Founded in 1993, TCA Architects plans and designs multifamily housing and hospitality developments for a variety of clients. The firm’s collaborative approach and technological expertise have resulted in award-winning, sustainable projects that respect communities and the environment. For more information, please visit http://tca-arch.com/.
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