The Nw Wyvernwood

Transforming Wyvernwood Apartments to make a vibrant new Boyle Heights.

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Wyvernwood Creates Ground-Breaking Jobs Program
to Benefit Residents of Boyle Heights

Partnership between owners of Wyvernwood Apartments and PVJOBS creates pipeline to thousands of construction jobs

LOS ANGELES (March 9, 2011) — As part of its plans to modernize and transform the outdated Wyvernwood Apartments, property owner Fifteen Group has announced the creation of the Boyle Heights Jobs Collaborative, a local hiring program to help fill thousands of construction jobs that will be generated by the 10-year project. Coordinated by PVJOBS, a local nonprofit with significant expertise in construction workforce development, the program will help create significant employment opportunities for residents living at Wyvernwood and throughout the community.

The Boyle Heights Jobs Collaborative is patterned after the highly successful job-creation program pioneered a decade ago by the Playa Vista project in West Los Angeles. The Boyle Heights initiative has ambitious goals, including 30% local hiring for all construction work performed through each of the five phases of construction. The 30% local hire goal, as measured by hours worked, includes an effort to hire 10% at-risk workers. Special emphasis will be placed on hiring workers who are current residents of Wyvernwood Apartments. The redevelopment project is expected to create some 6,400 direct construction jobs and more than 10,000 overall jobs related to construction.

Several prominent community groups have signed on to become partners in the Boyle Heights Jobs Collaborative, including Homeboy Industries, Jovenes Inc., PUENTE Learning Center, the East Los Angeles Occupational Center, the Los Angeles Youth Opportunity Movement, the Los Angeles Conservation Corps, El Centro de Ayuda, Arbor Northeast Worksource Center and the East Los Angeles Skills Center. Partnerships with additional organizations will be announced shortly.

“Homeboy Industries is proud to be a partner in the Boyle Heights Jobs Collaborative, which is creating a pipeline to direct local residents into the 10,000 construction-related jobs that will be created by this project,” said Father Gregory Boyle, founder of Homeboy Industries. “I wholeheartedly support the Wyvernwood redevelopment project, which will create critically important jobs and opportunities.”

Maria Elena Durazo, the Executive Secretary-Treasurer of the L.A. County Federation of Labor, said the project and the jobs collaborative will have a powerful impact in the community.

“The L.A. County Federation of Labor strongly supports the plan to redevelop Wyvernwood,” she said. “The project will create at least 10,000 desperately needed construction-related jobs, many of which will go to local residents through the Boyle Heights Jobs Collaborative. These new jobs, together with millions of dollars in annual tax revenue to be generated, will create tremendous benefits for workers and residents in Boyle Heights.”

PVJOBS has extensive experience delivering job-creation results on a variety of construction projects managed by private-sector employers, such as Playa Vista, and public-sector employers, including the Los Angeles Community College District and the Metropolitan Transportation Authority.

"Since 1998, PVJOBS has been helping an at-risk population obtain career-track employment in the construction field," Executive Director Ernest Roberts said. "With our experience and with Wyvernwood's commitment, I'm quite sure this program will be a remarkable success.

As part of the Boyle Heights Jobs Collaborative, all qualified participants will be placed in a database and made eligible for employment at all PVJOBS projects, significantly increasing employment opportunities.

“The partnership with PVJOBS is an important step in creating a model local hiring program that will benefit residents of Wyvernwood and Boyle Heights,” said Fifteen Group Partner Steven Fink. “We are eager to continue building a strong network of community-based organizations to help drive local participation and achieve the ambitious job-creation goals we’ve set.”

About the Wyvernwood Redevelopment Project

The Wyvernwood Redevelopment Project will transform the aging Wyvernwood Apartments in Boyle Heights into a modern living center with attractive housing, convenient retail and office areas and beautiful open spaces. The 10-year, $2 billion project developed by Fifteen Group will include up to 4,400 apartments and condominiums; 325,000 square feet of retail, office and civic space; and 10 acres of parks and other open space. Fifteen percent of all units – up to 660 in total – will be designated as affordable housing. The project is forecast to create 10,000 construction-related jobs, with many going to Boyle Heights residents through the Boyle Heights Jobs Collaborative, a dedicated local hire program. For more information, contact Steve Sugerman or Randy James at (310) 689-7535.

About PVJOBS

PVJOBS works with more than 70 local job-skills training programs and community-based organizations to bring qualified individuals into the workplace. As part of the program, PVJOBS provides support resources to ensure that employees have the greatest opportunity for success. To date, over 2,700 positions have been filled at PVJOBS by outstanding men and women who have overcome obstacles and turned their lives around. The candidate retention rate is nearly 90 percent and more than 5,300 active job-ready candidates are listed from partnered community-based organizations. For more information about PVJOBS visit www.pvjobs.org.

For more information about the Boyle Heights Jobs Collaborative, contact Miguel Quinteros at (323) 432-3955 or mquinteros@pvjobs.org.

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