A ceremonial groundbreaking Thursday will signal the start of construction—delayed by more than two years—of "The Village," a large retail and housing project designed to enhance and expand the area.
Developer Related California estimates spending $350 million and one year to build to the project.
At the heart of the development will be 158 luxury condos, 160 apartments for residents with low incomes and 20,000 square feet of retail outlets and restaurants. Olympic Drive will be extended, and there will also be public parks and community gardens, children's play areas and a computer lab.
"It is designed to enhance pedestrian connectivity with a public walk street between Main Street and Ocean Avenue, and abundant gardens and plazas lined with retail and restaurants with outdoor dining," the developer wrote in an advisory to local media.
It "marks the first new residences on Ocean Avenue in 20 years, it said.
In 2009, the Santa Monica Daily Press reported that the Related California struggled to finance the project, and postponed the groundbreaking until July 2010. Construction was initially slated to start in the summer of 2009.
In a few months, major construction is expected to be underway to build the Palisades Garden Walk. The six-acre garden walk will provide a flowing connection via a series of winding pathways among the and the pier, , the proposed Colorado Avenue Esplanade and the Fourth Street Expo station.