28th Street Apartments | Los Angeles Conservancy
Photo by Eric Staudenmaier Photography

28th Street Apartments

This building designed by Paul Revere Williams, the first African American member of the American Institute of Architects, originally served the African American community as a YMCA. Throughout the twentieth century it was the site of important political meetings and social gatherings.

The building featured two community rooms, a gymnasium, a pool, a communal cafeteria, and fifty-two dormitory-style rooms with shared toilets on each floor. The pool was an important feature, as municipal swimming pools were racially segregated in Los Angeles until 1931, providing African Americans with few swimming options.

In 2012, the historic YMCA reopened as 28th Street Apartments after a renovation project that converted the original building and a new addition into forty-nine studio apartments with private kitchens and baths. The building now serves low-income adults and formerly homeless youths transitioning to independent living. The project preserved a cultural and architectural icon in Los Angeles, earning it a Conservancy Preservation Award in 2013.