Piazza Developer Begins Entitlement Process for New Project

Wang’s team testified before the City Council for the first time in many months.

Written by VINCENT WEI / Published November 4, 2011

Newly hired Community Development Director Steve Masura on Thursday released a timeline for Piazza developer Randy Wang to complete the entitlement process for his new project.

The developer must receive City approval for his revised project, now known as the Temple City Plaza, by March 31 in order to receive assistance from foreign investors.

According to timeline, which Masura wrote in the January 13, 2011 weekly city manager’s report, a Planning Commission-led study session will be held on February 8. An official public hearing by the commission will be held on February 22 and the City Council is expected to conduct its own hearing on March 15.

Wang and his development team recently presented during the January 4 community redevelopment agency meeting.

Prior to Wang’s status update, the developer and his team had not attended a public meeting for many months.

Communication between Wang and the City froze after the developer in 2008 accused former city officials of bribery. Last February, relations were restored after the City and the developer settled on a civil lawsuit.

At the January 4 meeting, members of the developer’s team lavished praise on City Manager Jose Pulido for his support and the new “spirit of cooperation” between the City and Wang.

Howard Poyourow, senior project manager, Armando Aguirre, commercial broker, and Randy Wang presented and responded to questions from the City Council. Suzie Koo, the developer’s real estate broker, was also in attendance.

Wang’s current plan proposes an urban center that will include two restaurants, two retail pads, and space for a 35,000 square feet market. The developer is also planning to construct second-story office spaces.

Aguirre stated on January 4 that the developer’s team was in talks with Smart and Final and Trader Joe’s to discuss fill the market space for the Temple City Plaza. Alternatively, a Best Buy or Marshalls could occupy the space, he said.

The developer’s commercial broker also noted that they had received “unsolicited offers” from some retailers after they had placed a sign on the parcel and released marking information.

Last October, the developer successfully received the “California Pacific Group Regional” designation granted by the federal government as a part of the EB-5 Immigrant Investor Program. The designation allows the developer to attract foreign investors who will give either $500,000 or $1,000,000 in exchange for a permanent U.S. residency visa. In return, the developer is able to raise the funds to finance his Temple City Plaza project.

Wang hopes to attract 40 investors, or raise $20 million, he said on January 4 in response to a question by Councilmember Vincent Yu.

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