The historic Dunbar Hotel, is finally getting an over-haul. The Dunbar Hotel on Central Ave, and E 42nd Street has been somewhat of a crumbling shell, but now is finally being renovated and returned to its former glory but not as a hotel. The hotel will be transferred into, 83-unit mixed-use, inter-generational community housing for seniors and families, spearheaded by Thomas Safran & Associates. The redevelopment project will create over 150 construction jobs.
The renovations of the Dunbar Hotel will feature 41 one-bedroom units for seniors in the Dunbar Hotel and 42 two, three, and four bedroom units for families.DunbarVillagefeatures approximately 8,000 square feet of retail space, including PACE Early Childhood Education and CD Techlink computer school.
Built in 1928, the Dunbar Hotel, originally named the Somerville Hotel, was the focal point of the Central Avenue African-American community during the 1930s and 1940s. The Hotel was built and operated by the Somervilles, a family of black pioneers in dentistry and business. After the stock market crash in 1929,Somervillewas forced to sell the hotel, and in 1930, the hotel was renamed in honor of the seminal poet Paul Laurence Dunbar. It became the most prestigious hotel inL.A.’s African-American community, hosting legends such as Billie Holiday, Louis Armstrong, Sammy Davis Jr., Lena Horne and many others. At that time, it was known as the West Coast Waldorf-Astoria. It was also the gathering place for African-American literary, political and intellectual leaders, including Langston Hughes, W.E.B. Du Bois, Ralph Bunche, Thurgood Marshall and James Weldon Johnson.
The project is set for completion in February of 2013.
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