Consultant hired for Tierra Luna project

DOWNEY - The multi-million dollar Tierra Luna project took one step forward Tuesday night after the City Council approved a $125,000 contract with Tierra West Advisors, a Los Angeles-based real estate consulting firm, who will help the city sift through negotiations surrounding the purposed retail/commercial site.During the last several months, city officials have been working with local developer Bob Manarino of Manarino Realty and Industrial Realty Group (IRG) to amend the existing Downey Landing Specific Plan for the reuse and redevelopment of the approximately 79 acres currently occupied by Downey Studios, according to a city report. In order to amend the specific plan and facilitate the redevelopment of the former NASA site, a development agreement between the city of Downey and IRG must be arranged. City officials will rely upon Tierra West Advisors to provide third party, real estate negotiation services while the terms of the agreement are discussed. Over the next several years, the city hopes to launch the development of a commercial project called Tierra Luna Marketplace, a big box anchored retail center that would accommodate restaurants, a hotel, movie theater and office space. According to the city report, the professional services agreement with Tierra West Advisors is not to exceed the amount $125,000. John Yonai, a principal at Tierra West Advisors and contributor to Councilman Mario Guerra's reelection campaign, will serve as representative for the firm during the one-year contract agreement. In addition, Louis Morales, who sits on the Planning Commission, also serves as a senior associate for Tierra West Advisors.

********** Published: March 24, 2011 - Volume 9 - Issue 49