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After successfully navigating an unanticipated level of neighborhood resistance, work is finally getting underway on another large mixed-use development in Downtown Los Angeles' burgeoning Arts District.

Yesterday, while walking the neighborhood with Downtown icon Brigham Yen, a small crew was spotted prepping the dirt lot at 950 East Third Street for construction.  The six-acre site, which is being developed in tandem by Associated Estates Realty and Legendary Development, will eventually birth a series of five-and-six-story buildings containing 472 apartments and 21,000 square feet of retail space.

The design of the 400,000-square-foot complex, crafted by Kava Massih Architects, is intended to match the existing feel and aesthetics of the Arts District.  Renderings indicate that the project would include numerous murals, as well as industrial-themed exterior finishes with metal accents.

However, those initial touches proved insufficient to nearby residents and property owners, many of whom descended upon a community meeting this past summer to voice their displeasure with the development's scale, dearth of live-work units and auto-oriented design.  In the end, the outcry from neighborhood stakeholders yielded results, including a slight reduction in the project's parking accommodations (from 922 stalls to 774 stalls) and the addition of pedestrian-friendly green space in lieu of a new street.

A full build-out of 950 East Third street is expected to take three years, beginning with an initial phase of 248 residential units.  It is the third large-scale mixed-use development to break ground in the Arts District over the past several years, following One Santa Fe and the Garey Lofts.