Where you once went to buy your Ford Windstar or have you Ford Explorer serviced, you’ll soon be able to live in one of 172-luxury apartments uniquely situated amid 15,000 square feet of integrated retail shopping and dining.
That’s the vision of the Hutton Companies, which, on Thursday, Nov. 1, officially broke ground on the approximately eight-acre project on Foothill Blvd. in La Verne, the former home of the Person Ford auto dealership.
“La Verne Village is textbook in-fill, repositioning a blighted former auto dealership into a mixed-used community this submarket is demanding,” said Scott C. Felix, vice president, Hutton Companies.
Upscale amenities for the contemporary Craftsman project, to be completed in 2014, include a pool and spa, fitness center, movie theater, business center and state-of-the art cable and internet access for the sophisticated foothills resident.
Congressman Gary G. Miller (R-Rancho Cucamonga), who serves on the House Financial Services Committee, presented Felix with a special commendation, citing how the project will stimulate the local economy.
“We lost the auto industry, they [Person Ford] vacated it. We’re sitting here with old asphalt. Some money went into your [the sellers] pocket, which is good. You get to pay taxes, thank you very much. We appreciate that. The Hutton Companies is going to provide jobs. They’re dedicated, and they’re going to be here. They’re not building it to sell; they’re building it to hold. They’re putting their name and reputation forward, and I’m proud to call them friends.”
Without another car dealership ready to fill the space, Hutton Companies, the city of La Verne and its partners sought a new vision for the iconic property. Hutton facilitated that process.
“Everybody knew it was going to transition,” Felix explained. “The question was, what was it going to transition to? What did the investment community want, what did the lending community want, what did the city want, what did the seller want?
“The site had to be repositioned. So it was an education process.”
With the rezoning and repositioning process complete, Hutton can now focus on moving dirt and marketing.
“We’ll see equipment here this month,” Felix added. “And we’ll be completed by quarter one of 2014, so 14 months give or take.”