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Developer Legado Presents Outline of Plans for Lower Playa del Rey

A small grocery store, a bike shop, two restaurants and a 72-unit residential complex are planned for 138 Culver Blvd., also known as The Triangle.

A development company with three projects in the works in lower Playa del Rey met with community members Tuesday night to outline their plans for the vacant lot known as The Triangle.

Derek Jones, chief operating officer of developer Legado Co., told the members of the Neighborhood Council of Westchester/Playa's Planning and Land Use Committee that the one-acre plot at 138 Culver Blvd. will be converted to a 72-unit residential complex with 16,000-square-feet of retail space, including two restaurants, a bike shop and a small grocery store.

The complex will have a roof line that's 45-feet tall with 45 one-bedroom units and 27 two-bedroom units, Jones said. The developers have not yet decided if the units will be rentals or condominiums, he said.

Plans do not call for any variances to height restrictions or parking requirements and is within the C-4 commercial zone, Jones said.

Committee member David Voss asked about traffic impacts from the proposed development and what will be done to ease any increased congestion.

Jones replied that traffic studies found the project would lead to modest increases during P.M. peak hours westbound on Culver Boulevard. He recalled that the mitigation called for improving the flow of westbound traffic on Culver Boulevard and/or southbound traffic on Nicholson Street by creating an additional left-turn lane from Culver Boulevard onto Nicholson Street.

The project also will include a two-level subterranean garage with 72 parking spaces with lower-level parking for residents and upper-level parking for retail patrons and guests. The only entrance and exit from the parking lot will be on Pacific Avenue. The underground garage will be built on sandy soil prone to liquefaction, but plans call for building a concrete waterproof foundation 25-feet below ground.

Jones said future plans could entail diagonal parking at the base of Culver Boulevard that would increase the number of spots and encourage more pedestrians.

Committee member Sibyl Buchanan asked if the project would make affordable units available as part of the state's 1982 Mello Act, which is intended to protect and increase the supply of affordable housing near the California coast. Jones said the project falls under the Mello Act since it's more than 10 units and they were aiming to provide eight affordable units either off-site or in the immediate vicinity of the project.

"I think everyone likes affordable housing in concept," Jones said. "But folks are not wild about having subsidized units in lower Playa."

The developers will have to check with the City Attorney's Office to determine how much flexibility they have in providing the required number of affordable units off-site.

Cheryl Burnett, a committee member and lower Playa del Rey resident, noted that Legado also was involved in two other developments in Playa del Rey; one at Toe's Beach and another at 230 Culver Boulevard, where Outlaws Bar & Grill restuarant currently resides. Jones said the two other projects are included in the traffic study for The Triangle property.

Burnett also asked that the developers adhere to the community's emerging Community Design Overlay (CD0), which provides design guidelines for builders.

"We're not in a position to wait on the sidelines while a CDO is formed or not formed, that wouldn't be an appropriate request to make to us," Jones said. "I've said before that if a CDO or guidelines exist at the time of this project going forward we will abide by those guidelines."

Daisy Allen, a graduate student at UCLA, said she's been working on the design guidelines for Culver Boulevard for about a year and said the project has included several community meetings. A draft of the design guidelines should be ready by April, Allen said.

The three projects planned for lower Playa del Rey prompted the community to kick-start the creation of design guidelines because none were in place, Burnett said.

The project at 138 Culver Blvd. has had most of its environmental reviews and analysis completed and will be available for public comment in a matter of weeks, Jones said.

Me January 26, 2012 at 03:17 PM
Yes, it's nice to live by the beach, but with so much limited space, why must the developers constantly feel the need to cram these huge apt complexes and condos in tiny spaces ? Traffic is a nightmare to begin with on Lincoln Blvd all day long. Now with another large complex in the works, it's only going to get worse. I dont care about the studies they've done on how much the traffic will impact the area, they are always wrong, and they are never the ones who drive on these streets on a daily basis. It's going to be much worse than they anticipate. With so much open, and unused land, inland, why dont these developers go inland for a change ? Not to mention low income housing only brings in more crime to the area, especially more burglaries. This is the first time I have heard, or read anything about this project, so im guessing this project has been kept from the public for the most part, so as not to get too many opposition from the residents who already live here. Dear developers : GO INLAND FOR A CHANGE ! WE HAVE ENOUGH TRAFFIC, AND CONJESTION HERE AS IT IS !!
Westlawn neighbor January 27, 2012 at 02:40 AM
I agree with "Me" above. Traffic on the Westside keeps getting worse and worse. Want to know how they get these ugly, oversized 72-unit residential complexes passed by the various Planning Departments ? In the case of the infamous intersection of Lincoln and Washington (by Marina Del Rey), has an "F" rating, the lowest possible rating -- i.e., the worst traffic level. Say a nearby proposed project is projected to add x hundred more car trips a day ... well that's OK, because it won't have any effect on traffic. { Huh ? } That intersection is already rated an "F" -- we can't give it any worse grade -- it will still be an "F" -- therefore, the proposed development is A-OK, because "it won't make the Lincoln & Washington traffic any worse." Unbelievable pretzel logic !! You couldn't make this stuff up.
Anthony Sant'Anselmo January 27, 2012 at 10:55 PM
Myself, and about a hundred other residents and friends that I have out there, yes, really that much - want Playa Del Rey to remain the wonderful "undiscovered" community that it is. The mom and pop "feel" of all the businesses are the lifeblood of this community. No one wants to see a 7-11, a fast food chain or an excuse to line ones pockets with dumping a new apartment complex in downtown PDR. If we want to go to Santa Monica, we'll visit SM, not Playa. Keep it undiscovered and the best kept secret that it is, please. Signed, a ten year resident of PDR and an L.A. Native of 35 years.
Ruth Lansford January 28, 2012 at 12:54 AM
This area is unique in that it is virtually an island, restricted by Ballona channel on the north, the wetlands on the east, the airport on the south and the bay on the west. There is no way to relieve congestion, especially since this is also a beach community with lots of visitors. The idea that we can withstand, not only this overdevelopment, but the 2 others planned by the same developer is pie in the sky. Simply put, there is no solution to the traffic and parking issues, other than limiting further development which should have been done years ago.
M & S February 10, 2012 at 06:34 PM
i mean seriously people, PDR is in dire need of a face lift! This will make a wonderful location more wonderful. Can't wait!!!
B. Scott October 06, 2012 at 10:35 PM
PDR is fine the way it is. If you don’t like the way it looks leave, Jerk, No one else in the town wants it why do you? You must have a $$$$ interest.
B. Scott October 06, 2012 at 10:43 PM
Legado also wants to tear down Outlaws and put up a 5 or 6 story building with a parking structure. Is that ok with you too? If you like that kind of thing move to CC. There only interested is making money if they hurt our standard of life, tough.
Tom McMahon August 27, 2013 at 01:27 PM
Defend Lower Playa del Rey has gone viral: https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=0Viel_RVmmA
Tom McMahon August 27, 2013 at 01:30 PM
If you go here, read the flyer and then click on it you will go to Bonin's website. From there (on the right middle) you can go to his Facebook page and leave comments: http://www.delrey.com/flyerforpdrneighbors.html

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