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Nikkei Center Approved by City Council Committee

This afternoon the Information Technology & Government Services Committee of the Los Angeles City Council voted to approve the selection of Nikkei Center and the development team of Little Tokyo Service Center, Kaji & Associates and Urban Partners as the developer of the First and Alameda property commonly known as the Mangrove site. The ITGS Committee has forwarded this item to the full City Council for their consideration on Friday August 15.

Andrea Galvin of the CLA's Office presented their report. She described the work of their review panel and their financial consultant, Keyser Marston Associates. She mentioned that five proposals were received, of which two were eliminated early in the review process. Of the remaining three teams Nikkei Center scored the highest in the five scoring criteria:

1. Responsiveness of the Development Concept (with regard to the Little Tokyo Planning and Design Guidelines) and Purchase Offer
2. Community Employment, Expanded Living Wage and Other Community Benefits
3. Financial Feasibility of the Proposal
4. Development Team Qualifications
5. Financial Capacity of the Development Team

Speaking in support of the selection were Chris Aihara, Little Tokyo Community Council; Ernest Hida, Nishi Temple; Carl Kawata, Japanese Chamber of Commerce of Southern California; Akemi Kikumura Yano, Japanese American National Museum; and Marie Rumsey, Council District 9 (Jan Perry's office). Generally the speakers agreed with the CLA's recommendation and noted the Nikkei Center team's longstanding commitment and accountability to the community.

On behalf of Little Tokyo Service Center and our partners, thanks to Ms. Aihara, Mr. Hida, Mr. Kawata, Ms. Yano and Councilwoman Jan Perry's office for their support, as well as to others who were willing to attend and speak on our behalf.

Onward to City Council!