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Venice Update

News of Venice, CA and Marina del Rey CA

Coastal Commission Urges Closure of Venice Redevelopment Loophole; Gives Notice to City Officials

Note: This is a press release from Noaki Schwartz, public information officer for California Coastal Commission.

The Coastal Commission has asked the city of Los Angeles to stop its practice of approving the demolition and reconstruction of homes in Venice by mischaracterizing them as remodels.

“It’s been deeply frustrating for all parties and could easily be avoided at the city level,” said Commission Chair Steve Kinsey, who sent a letter to the city’s planning director urging action on the matter (attached).

The commission, at its April hearing, considered 13 projects that had been recently appealed to the state agency by Venice residents. The city of Los Angeles determined the projects were minor remodels even though more than 50 percent of the structure was being demolished and reconstructed. This mischaracterization created a loophole whereby homeowners did not get the necessary coastal development permit from the commission to build substantially larger houses.

After hours of testimony which included weeping homeowners, images of houses stripped to their foundations and frustrated Venice neighbors who see the quirky and unique character of their community disappearing, the commission denied the vast majority of exemption requests. Go to http://www.coastal.ca.gov/meetings/mtg-mm16-4.html to see those projects that were denied/approved.

In his May 6 letter, Kinsey alerted the city to the problem and urged its immediate attention.

“The commission would like to work with the city of avoid these types of appeals in the future, which result in increased workload for both our staffs, costly delays and confusion for applicants, and anger and frustration by applicants,” Kinsey wrote.

Ltr to City of LA Permit Exemption Processing 050616_000001

Ltr to City of LA Permit Exemption Processing 050616_000002

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