Olson Homes Purchases Former Lumber Yard in San Gabriel Valley
Colliers International Transaction Valued at $4.6 Million
The Olson Company, an award-winning Orange County-based residential developer that helped pioneer urban infill housing , has purchased an irregularly shaped parcel of former industrial land in Temple City, California where it plans to build 74 of its signature homes, Colliers International has announced.
“We really like the San Gabriel Valley market and we continue to look for additional opportunities there,” said Olson’s Chief Executive Officer Scott Laurie. “Our belief is that buyers there are looking for new products, but there is not much new inventory. We plan to change that where and when we can and that’s why we were so determined to push for a zone change and buy this property.”
Colliers International brokers represented both Olson and the landowner and played key roles in holding the transaction together over the several months of public hearings, site plan revisions, and general plan amendments prior to the homebuilder’s plan being approved by the city council. Representing both the homebuilder and the land owner, Ramshorn Corp., was a team of Colliers brokers including Senior Vice President Wayne Lambert, Executive Vice President Scott Heaton, and Associate Joe Williams.
“Ultimately, the sale hinged on a change in zoning from an industrial use to residential,” said Lambert, who worked closely with the landowner during the entire process. “That sounds so simple, but, in order to get there, it requires so many different steps that it becomes a necessary and very lengthy process. I don’t think any of us thought it would take as long as it did to accomplish, but we are pleased to have seen it through the maze of site-plan reviews, general plan amendments, environmental studies, noise studies, and public hearings.”
Seal Beach-based Olson, which calls its urban developments “walks” due to their emphasis on creating communities with amenities that are within walking distance of the homes it builds, such as mass transit hubs, recreation venues, shopping centers, and schools, has named its newest subdivision “Linden Walk” because the Linden tree has a variety of colors that will be used throughout the community. The site was occupied by Reliable Wholesale Lumber until 2009 when it ceased operations. The site has been vacant since that time.
Olson’s plans include construction of a gated neighborhood with a combination of single-family attached and detached homes with on-site recreational amenities on the newly re-zoned parcel. The project, which is located near the southern-most portion of the city, also will include the construction of a sound wall to mitigate noise from the adjacent and still-active Union Pacific Railroad line.
“Despite the sometimes-daunting steps that occur anytime municipal officials attempt to amend their general plans or revise outdated zoning restrictions, it requires a lengthy public process,” said Colliers’ Heaton. “But Olson had already successfully developed homes in this region and knew that if the zoning could be changed, it could transform this parcel of vacant land into a vibrant and much-needed new neighborhood.”