The idea of converting office space to residential is particularly appealing today for its potential to address two of Los Angeles’ most critical issues at once: (1) reducing the stock of underutilized office space and (2) increasing the inventory of much needed housing.
According to CoStar, there are currently over 65 million square feet of vacant office space in LA County, a 51% increase since the start of 2020. Over the next two years, another 20 million square feet are expected to become vacant, pushing the County-wide vacancy rate from just under 10% in 2018 to almost 20% by 20251.
From 1980 to 2010, one million fewer homes were built across LA County than were needed2. Looking forward, the city of Los Angeles must increase annual production of new housing from 8,800 per year to 57,000 per year, just to meet expected demand by 20293.