For as long as Scott A. Chaplan can remember, South Central Los Angeles has been the land of broken promises.

“I lived in L.A. all of my life,” says Chaplan, the managing principal of L.A.-based developer Bethany Square. “And South Central L.A. has needed redevelopment all of my life. There were a lot of promises to develop it, but it never happened.”

Chaplan hopes to change that with Bethany Square, a 4-acre, $100 million, public-private project designed to bring 150 workforce housing units, 100 units of senior housing, offices, banking, restaurants, and even a childcare center to the blighted area best known for being the epicenter of the racially charged 1992 riots.

Despite the area's troubled past, Chaplan says the project can be profitable with the help of tax credits and participation from private and public organizations. “There is a perception that South L.A. doesn't make sense, but it is the wrong perception,” he says.

To address the ruling theory that the area is woefully crime-riddled, architect Lawrence Scarpa used Crime Prevention Through Environmental Design techniques, including eliminating dark or hidden areas in the project.

“We incorporate elements such as lots of natural light, so it is not conducive to people hiding out,” says Scarpa, principal of Los Angeles-based architects Pugh + Scarpa. He says the project's contemporary design was inspired by the people who live there.

After years of broken promises, South Los Angeles residents can expect to see Bethany Square break ground in early 2008 and open two years later.

  • Dallas: Granite Properties and Gables Residential are developing Granite + Gables Uptown, a $200 million mixed-use community to include a 14-story office tower and a 17-story residential tower. Units will feature granite countertops, hardwood floors, balconies, 10-foot ceilings, and 8-foot doors. The two buildings will sit atop a podium with 17,000 square feet of retail and restaurant space, a fitness center, and pool. Construction will start in January '08 with completion in the fourth quarter of '09
  • Elmhurst, Ill.: Providence Management and Development and Greystone Communities are developing Park Place of Elmhurst, a continuing care retirement community to include 183 independent living units. The one-, two-, and three-bedroom units will include washers and dryers, 24-hour monitoring and call systems, emergency power generators, and balconies. Amenities will include a range of on-site social activities plus a bistro, fitness center with an indoor pool and spa, club room, and community chapel. The community is expected to open in 2009.
  • Miami: Leviev Boymelgreen is developing Marquis, a 67-story condo community in downtown Miami's arts and entertainment district. The project will include 306 condo units and Eleven Biscayne Hotel & Spa. Units, priced from the $900,000s to more than $15 million, will include Viking appliances, balconies, and 10-foot ceilings. Amenities will include the RockResorts spa, smart building technology, and a sky pool deck. Completion is scheduled for February 2009.
  • Antioch, Tenn.: Continental Properties Co. is developing The Springs at Mountain View (below), a 336-unit apartment complex in Antioch, Tenn. The one-, two-, and three-bedroom units will feature laundry hookups, contemporary finishes, and balconies or patios. The property, built by McShane Construction Corp., will feature a clubhouse with a business center, conference facilities, fitness center, and kitchen. Completion is scheduled for fall 2008.
  • Waco, Texas: Mercy Housing has broken ground on Brook Oaks Senior Residences, a 54-unit affordable community. Residents will pay 30 percent of their income for the one-bedroom units. Amenities will include an on-site case worker to facilitate senior activities, a community room, a computer lab, a healing garden, and a walking path. National Church Residences will manage the property.
  • Atlanta: Donald Trump, in partnership with the Wood Partners and Dezer Properties, is developing Trump Towers Atlanta, a $300 million high-end luxury condominium complex. The 563 units will be built in two phases and priced from $500,000 to $1.6 million. Phase one will include a 47-story tower with 363 units, and phase two will include a 38-story tower with 200 units. Amenities will include a lounge, pool, fitness center, and 20,000 square feet of retail space for boutique shops and a signature restaurant. Completion is expected for 2010.
  • Birmingham, Ala.: Cityville Block 121 Development, an entity of Inland American Communities Group, has partnered with Corporate Realty Development to redevelop a city block downtown. The companies plan to demolish the existing structures to develop a $33 million mixed-use project with 258 apartment units, 18,000 square feet of retail space, and a parking deck. Construction is expected to begin in early 2008.
  • Chicago: Lennar is developing Parc Huron, a 221-unit condo community in the River North neighborhood. The 21-story building will offer one-, two-, and three-bedroom units featuring granite countertops, stainless steel appliances, red oak flooring, and 9-1/2-foot ceilings. Amenities will include a landscape park and dog run, entertainment room with a billiards table and kitchen, theater, and 24-hour doorman.
  • —Listings compiled by Rachel Z. Azoff