Partner Engineering and Science, Inc. is headquartered in the Los Angeles area. Whether your property is located on the coast of Los Angeles or the hills, Partner fully understands the variances of these landscapes. The Partner Los Angeles team is experienced with multiple aspects of the environmental due diligence process and includes, but is not limited to, Jenny Redlin, REPA and Arcie Propster.
Partner has been serving the needs of the commercial and multifamily real estate industry since before the creation of ASTM standards. Partner is known as an industry leader in Phase I Environmental Site Assessments and often meet ASTM E1527-13 Standards in our reporting. Partner is able to create and meet customized client scopes.
Los Angeles is rich in properties that are both historical and newly built. As such, it is important for anyone dealing with commercial or multifamily properties to gain an understanding of the immediate and future repairs of a property. Partner is able to inspect the building's systems and provide a table that indicates the immediate and future investments that will be required for the property.
While Partner offers Probable Maximum Loss Reports (PMLs) to every seismic zone in the United States, Angelinos, or those that do commercial or multifamily transactions in Los Angeles, truly understand the importance of an accurate PML report. Understanding the local geology and correctly reflecting the math in a PML report is most important to those that purchase or lend on commercial or multifamily property in Los Angeles. Joseph Derhake, PE, brings 15 years of experience performing PML reports as a registered engineer for Fannie Mae and CMBS Lenders to the Partner Los Angeles office.
Partner is a coordinator of American Land Title Association (ALTA) Surveys/American Congress on Surveying and Mapping (ACSM), Boundary Surveys, Topographic Surveys, and Zoning Reports across the United States for use in commercial transactions. We effectively handle, and facilitate the coordination of surveyors, title, ordering, process, product and delivery. We manage the entire process of acquiring your survey and can effectively manage single-site or multi-site transactions.
Partner performs Phase II Environmental Testing either in support of a financing decision or to meet the requirements of the City of Los Angeles Board of Public Works. Most of our reports are performed to meet the standards set by ASTM E1903-97(2002).
Although asbestos has been outlawed for many uses, its presence can still be found in many building materials. Partner is able to inspect and potentially identify suspect areas that may contain asbestos and have those areas tested for the presence of asbestos. If asbestos is found to be present, Partner is able to provide options to provide remediation options.
A zoning report is a necessary part of many real property transactions because the current owner is responsible for existing zoning violations. Partner’s Zoning Reports take usage regulations, Los Angeles and municipality provisions into consideration as well as other regulations; such as the Americans with Disabilities Act.
4 Reasons Why Phase I Environmental Site Assessments are Different in California.
1) Regional Water Quality Control Boards: In most states the regulations are statewide rules with maybe some variations for cities and counties. In California, the State Water Board grants a lot of power and autonomy to the Regional Water Quality Control Boards. The regional water boards are organized generally by watershed and may split counties. Water boards may have very different regulations. For example, the San Francisco Bay Regional Water Quality Control Board developed Environmental Screening Levels (ESLs) for soil and groundwater contamination, whereas the Los Angeles Regional Water Quality Control Board uses different screening levels including Soil Screening Levels, CHHSLs for soil-gas (see below), and Maximum Contaminant Levels (MCLs) for groundwater.
2) CHHSLs: The California Environmental Protection Agency (EPA) published the California Human Health Screening Levels (CHHSLs) in 2005. The CHHSLs provide the user with a chemical specific look up table for what levels of soil gas or indoor air concentrations represent a threat to human health. CHHSLs are not intended to be regulatory numbers, but are often treated as such. CHHSLs are also famously conservative. You need an environmental consultant doing your Phase I ESA that knows how to interpret soil gas and indoor air data in relation to CHHSLs and this requires a lot of California experience.
3) CUPAs: Certified Unified Program Agencies (CUPAs) have a lot of power in California. CUPAs are city or county agencies that have been more or less deputized to handle certain regulatory functions. An example of a CUPA is the City of Los Angeles Fire Department, which oversees releases from underground storage tanks (USTs), termed leaking USTs or LUSTs. To do proper regulatory due diligence during a Phase I Environmental Site Assessment your environmental professional must understand the California CUPAs.
4) CEQA: The California Environmental Quality Act (CEQA) is California’s equivalent of the National Environmental Protection Act (NEPA). A Phase I Environmental Site Assessment sometimes has to deal with CEQA/NEPA issues like wetlands, endangered species, and/or historical resources as additional scope items.
Southern California Experience
Some recent projects and experience that provide insight into our robust Southern California consulting practice include:
Equity Property Condition Assessment, Los Angeles, California
Partner preformed a complex multi-disciplinary Property Condition Assessment in support of an acquisition of a 14-story office in downtown Los Angeles. Partner assisted the client in fully understanding the asset and negotiating appropriate allowance for some serious deferred maintenance conditions.
Phase I & II Environmental Site Assessments, Tank Removal, Soil Remediation, Long Beach, CA
Partner performed a Phase I & II ESA on a former gas station as part of a redevelopment effort in Long Beach, California. The site investigation revealed the presence of three abandoned fuel tanks and residual soil contamination. Partner, also a licensed contractor, removed the tanks and excavated the soil; ultimately getting closure from the Long Beach Fire Department. While these surprises were bad news to our clients, our ability to get closure relatively quickly yielded a happy client.
Phase I Environmental Site Assessments, Asbestos Survey, Restaurant Development, Riverside, CA
Partner has a national master service agreement with one of the country’s largest quick server restaurant organizations. Partner was engaged to do a rush Phase I Environmental Site Assessment (ESA) and an ALTA Survey. The Phase I ESA included an asbestos survey on a building schedule to be demolished.
Property Condition Assessments, 45 site portfolio in Southern California
Partner performed Property Condition Assessments on 45 office buildings mostly in Los Angeles, Long Beach, Riverside, and San Bernardino. Our PCAs were done in support of acquisitions and were all completed within two weeks.
Site Characterization, Soil Remediation, CVS Development, Los Angeles, CA
Partner provided site characterization and soil remediation on a former gas station and former car dealership in support of a complex development in a dense area of Los Angeles. Partner characterized soil, soil vapor, and groundwater contamination from an old fuel release. The project was done under the supervision of the Los Angeles Regional Water Quality Control Board and proceeded to remediation. The soil remediation project was particularly difficult due to complex shoring requirements. Partner received closure on the soil and groundwater ahead of client expectations.
Environmental Due Diligence on 330 Gas Stations in Southern California
Partner performed environmental due diligence on 330 gas stations located in the six large Southern California Counties: Los Angeles, Ventura, Orange, San Bernardino, and Riverside. The gas stations had a lot of subsurface data and over 100 open cases. Partner reduced a large amount of data and quantified the portfolio’s environmental liability for our client.
Physical Needs Assessments and Probable Maximum Loss Reports, Los Angeles, CA
Partner completed Physical Needs Assessments (PNAs) and Probable Maximum Loss (PML) reports for a 13-site portfolio of multi-family properties in Los Angeles and Bellflower. The PMLS on the properties ranged from 11% to 15% as the Scenario Expected Losss. The PML and PNA reports were completed to both ASTM and Fannie Mae specifications.
PNAs and PMLs for a 16-Site Portfolio, Los Angeles and Orange County, CA
Partner completed a 16 site portfolio of physical Needs Assessments (PNA) and Probable Maximum Loss (PML) reports on multifamily properties throughout the Los Angeles metro area. Property locations included: Inglewood, Garden Grove, Gardena, El Cajon, Hawthorne, Harbor City and Anaheim.
Probable Maximum Loss Reports (PMLs), CA
Partner completed 16 Probable Maximum Loss Reports (PMLs) done for a portfolio on a variety of property types including: hotel, self-storage, multi-family, office, medical office, mixed use, mobile home park, and retail. Locations were throughout California.
Equity Phase I ESAs, PCAs, and PMLs for a 24 Site Portfolio in California
Partner completed a 24 site portfolio of equity-level Phase I Environmental Site Assessments, Property Condition Assessments and Probable Maximum Loss Reports on office properties throughout California. Properties were located in San Diego, Ontario, Lake Forest, Walnut, Tustin, Glendale and Woodland.