Development Planned for California Blvd./Arroyo Parkway Intersection Will Get Council’s Attention Monday

Published : Monday, December 16, 2019 | 5:57 AM

A development affecting five buildings along Arroyo Parkway from the Whole Foods Market building south to California Boulevard will be reviewed by Pasadena City Council Monday night.

The stretch includes two large, empty former Mexican restaurant buildings that once housed the Margarita Jones and Doña Maria eateries.

The Council will hear plans for the planned development of senior living and medical projects for the properties.

The effort is dubbed the Affinity Health Project.

“This is the beginning of a long process,” said Pete Kutzer, president of Edgewood Realty Partners, which is working with Adept on the project.

“When we started doing our planning we thought about the fact that there’s the crossroads, the gateway to Huntington Hospital immediately to the West and Old Pasadena to the north of us. The property is already anchored by a flagship Whole Foods, a healthy lifestyle grocer-retailer, and we have a site that benefits from the transit as well.”

The building and adjacent land parcels are situated at 465 to 577 Arroyo Parkway.

“It’s the beginning of the process,” Kutzer said. “We’re collaboratively working with the City and the community to figure out proper scope and design.”

Adept Development is a private design architecture firm in Pasadena and Kutzer said he and his firm have investments in Pasadena-area properties.

“I grew up in Sacramento and went to Berkeley and lived in Pasadena for 27 years,” he said. “We’ve been very active in many projects, including the Chamber of Commerce building, it’s a property we’ve owned and restored.”

“Our [current] plan includes a medical building with a research component and an assisted living senior project and all of it together is the Affinity Health Project,” Kutzer said. “It’s a healthy lifestyle medical and research and seniors’ assisted living project. It’s coordinated.”

“There is an additional component as Edgewood and Adept have experience with historic buildings and there are two historic properties within the property, and our plan calls for preserving and restoring the two buildings them and they would be the focal point, a common area focal point as the heart of the project.”

Preliminary plans were submitted to the City several weeks ago as part of the applications. There have been numerous meetings with community groups to help formulate the plans, Kutzer said.

“We’ve already done community outreach to gather input and suggestions,” he said. “Edgewood and Adept work collaboratively to arrive at a project that is appropriate.”

“Our plan is to incorporate retail and restaurant users on the ground floor of project,” he said. “There will be pedestrian-friendly amenities and activities. We believe it’s an outstanding site for what we propose,” Kutzer said. “Folks can retire here in the middle of the City instead of having to move away from their family. This is just the beginning of a community process. We’re doing a full environmental report.”

Paul Little president of the Pasadena City Chamber of Commerce said there’s a need for senior housing.

“We’re going to see more application for senior living,” Little said. “They generally don’t have traffic impacts. And Pasadena is a city with services and amenities folks want to be near. Anything would be an improvement, but this is a reasonable use that meets a need in the community and will be a positive addition to that stretch of Arroyo Parkway.”

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