May 21, 2022 Breaking News, Latest News, and Videos

Eight Downtown Opportunity Sites Should Not Receive Case-By-Case Consideration:

Dear Editor,

Last week more than 350 residents weighed in on  the Downtown Specific Plan, and the message came through loud and clear: the overwhelming majority oppose the tidal wave of  proposed developments in the down town area.

There are currently an unprecedented 46 development agreements in the pipeline, 27 of which were filed in the past year.

And as we  heard last week, the most serious area of concern was the eight so-called Opportunity  Sites, where  developers  have  what amounts to a blank  slate to  propose projects significantly exceeding  the  zoning  standards  in the other parts of the downtown area, ostensibly so long as the developer provides a certain number of  vaguely  defined “community  benefits” like exemplary  architecture,  cultural  institutions  or a finite amount of affordable housing.

This freedom from constraints lies at the heart of the battle against three proposed skyscrapers at the waterfront: the Miramar Hotel, the Gehry building and the Holiday Inn.

Each of these proposed projects has as its center a massive tower of about 21 stories in height and includes varying numbers of luxury condos.   

Each contradicts the Downtown Specific Plan, and, more to the point, the LUCE, which promised to protect light and air from the ocean and cherish the unique character our city.

How can this be achieved with precedent -setting high rises across from Palisades Park. And what about the Miramar?

The LUCE calls for sites adjacent to residential areas to be “transitional zones” in order to keep the neighborhoods from being dwarfed and literally overshadowed by looming towers.

The Miramar, on its north side, is directly across from a quiet residential area and it is proposing what would be the tallest building in Santa Monica!

Last week we learned that the Downtown Specific Plan is making tremendous strides in implementing the LUCE and providing clear guidelines for development in the busiest part of our city.

However, the “elephant in the room” cannot be ignored. These eight opportunity sites must not be left for case by case decision outside of the aegis of the DSP. They are profit-driven and self-serving. Their cumulative negative impact has the clear potential of undermining all of the promise of the LUCE

Opportunity sites should be held to the same standards and zoning requirements that apply to every development coming before the Planning Commission and City Council.

That is the message that came through loud and clear at last week’s meeting. I commend The Mirror for giving us the opportunity to continue the conversation.

Eleanor Blumenberg

Santa Monica

in News
Related Posts

Los Angeles Metro Sees 15.9 Percent Increase in Median Rent

May 20, 2022

May 20, 2022

Median rent of $2,258, according to recent report By Dolores Quintana The ongoing pandemic has exacerbated the issues of housing...

New Renderings for Frank Gehry Hotel Development in Santa Monica

May 20, 2022

May 20, 2022

Project would include hotel, apartments, retail and a museum By Dolores Quintana Slowly but surely, plans for a  Frank Gehry-designed...

Shared Mobility Plummets in Santa Monica

May 20, 2022

May 20, 2022

Recent report also shows that nearly half of riders make over $100,000 By Sam Catanzaro Shared mobility use in Santa...

Christopher Dishlip Selected as Santa Monica’s New Assistant Director of Public Works

May 20, 2022

May 20, 2022

Public Works Director Rick Valte announced the selection of Christopher Dishlip as Santa Monica’s new Assistant Director of Public Works....

Letter to Editor: Response to Himmelrich’s “We Walk the Talk” Column

May 20, 2022

May 20, 2022

By Beau Marks As a Santa Monica resident, I am dismayed by Sue Himmelrich’s response (“We Walk the Talk,” Santa...

Motional And UberEats Launch Autonomous Deliveries In Santa Monica

May 18, 2022

May 18, 2022

There Are Plans For Expansion Into The Rest Of Los Angeles Motional, a global driverless technology leader, and Uber Technologies...

Winston Pies Opening Third Location In Santa Monica

May 18, 2022

May 18, 2022

The restaurant used to be known as ButterCrust Pies Winston Pies is staying in Santa Monica when opening their third...

Only 10 Vaquita Porpoises Survive, But The Species May Not Be Doomed

May 17, 2022

May 17, 2022

Hope remains for the porpoise species not only survive but thrive with human help. By Stuart Wolpert The vaquita porpoise,...

The American Cinematheque Brings “Bleak Week” To Santa Monica’s Aero Theatre And The Los Feliz Three Theatre

May 17, 2022

May 17, 2022

33 Films From 18 Countries In One Week. By Dolores Quintana Sometimes when things are tough and you’re feeling down,...

Man Who Murdered His Family Members Pleads Guilty To Five Other Killings

May 16, 2022

May 16, 2022

Escobar injured an additional seven other people as well.  By Dolores Quintana A man, Ramon Escobar, has pleaded guilty to...

The price of gasoline in Los Angeles County Has Experienced The Largest Increase Since February

May 16, 2022

May 16, 2022

Gasoline prices in Orange County Have Also Increased By Dolores Quintana Regular self-serve gasoline in the county of Los Angeles...

Santa Monica Travel Summit Of 2022 Returns To Take On Tomorrow

May 16, 2022

May 16, 2022

The Event Was Held At The Jonathan Club On Santa Monica Beach By Staff Writer The 2022 Santa Monica Tourism...

City Council Extends Santa Monica’s Parklet Program: Santa Monica Beat – May 16th, 2022

May 16, 2022

May 16, 2022

Local news and culture in under 5 minutes.* City Council Extends Santa Monica’s Parklet Program * Santa Monica High School Students...

1221 Ocean Avenue Complex Sold For Record Price

May 16, 2022

May 16, 2022

Sold for a record price of $330 million. By Dolores Quintana The Irvine Company has sold 1221 Ocean Avenue to...

Office Construction Is Starting To Rise In Los Angeles

May 15, 2022

May 15, 2022

Property vacancies are still affecting growth.  By Dolores Quintana In March, the Los Angeles Metropolitan area had 3.2 million square...