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Broadway Effort Announces New Financing

By Eric Richardson
Published: Monday, November 10, 2008, at 05:32PM
Ashes and Snow Eric Richardson [Flickr]

This January photo shows a typical Broadway scene, with old theaters serving as retail spaces.

It's tough to get financing in today's market, but the city doesn't want to see that put a squeeze on Broadway redevelopment. While details are yet to be finalized, Bringing Back Broadway Executive Director Jessica Wethington McLean today announced that the effort had secured a line of credit that will make $150 million annually available for projects on the corridor.

Part of the fallout in the financial sector has been a dramatic tightening of the credit market, making it much harder to get loans for development projects. This new credit is money that the city can make available to projects on Broadway under its own terms, ensuring that financing trouble doesn't delay the street's redevelopment.

The funding is a partnership between Bringing Back Broadway and the city's Community Development Department. It's a 5-year agreement set to kick off in 2009. Terms and eligibility will be announced early next year.

Bringing Back Broadway is an effort launched by Councilman Jose Huizar that aims to restore the glamor to what once was Los Angeles' premier shopping and entertainment corridor. At today's property owners meeting, McLean and those involved in various parts of the effort highlighted the progress that has been made in its first nine months.

Last month Huizar introduced a motion creating a task force to craft new rules for the reuse of vacant upper floors, targeting the estimated one million square feet of empty space on Broadway. Presentations at today's event highlighted some of the possibilities for that space, and offered property owners advice on how to access funds and plan renovations.


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