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Venice Update

News of Venice, CA and Marina del Rey CA

Ezra Gale Appointed Senior Planner

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Ezra Gale was appointed Senior Planner for Council District 11 by Councilman Mike Bonin.

“I look forward to working with the community, please reach out if you’d like to chat,” Ezra told Venice Update. “I am a big fan of Venice.” He can be reached at: ezra.gale@lacity.org.

“He will work with residents to ensure neighborhood-friendly development on the Westside,” according to Council District “Meet Ezra Gale.” “Also, in conjunction with Mike’s Planning Team and District Staff, he will be used to promote sustainable, neighborhood-friendly and transit-oriented development.”

Ezra received his B.A. in political science with a minor in public policy from UCLA and J.D. from UC Hastings, where he concentrated in local government law. While attending law school Ezra clerked for two federal judges and the Oakland City Attorney, where he worked on municipal code updates in the administrative law department. Prior to joining the CD 11 team, Ezra was the Director of Government Affairs for Building Industry, where he worked on a broad range of legislative and government relations issues relating to housing and development.

In his spare time, Ezra serves on the Urban Council of the YMCA of Metropolitan Los Angeles and the Land Use Committee of the Tarzana Neighborhood Council.

Comments (2)

  1. Nancy Vescovo

    Hi Ezra,
    I’m a resident of Sawtelle and as I understand it you’re supposed to be at the PLUM metings. You weren’t there tonight, Wed. Feb 14th and apparently haven’t been for some time. There is a LOT going on in Sawtelle and we need representation! Please let me know why you haven’t been and assure me you’ll be at the next meeting March 14th.I look forward to hearing from you. ~Nancy.

  2. Elaine Brandt

    Note: This was addressed To Ezra Gale, Councilman Mike Bonin’s senior planner

    I attended last evening’s Council of City Planning Hearing at Exposition. I was there to comment as a community resident against the planned E. Venice project, 1900 Penmar Avenue at Palms. I attended in good faith, hoping I and the other community residents who also attended, to attempt to persuade the Council and Staff to see the terrible effect this monster of an oversized, inappropriate project would affect the character of our small, residential community. Our numbers included a resident architect who made photographic renderings – to scale – of what the proposed 3-story with roof leisure ares (barbecue, etc.) would feel like to the adjacent properties. During the course of the Hearing, we residents got a lesson (again) in the abusive power of wealth and moneyed connections vs. an unarmed residential at-risk, community. We witnessed a “bait and switch” maneuver that ensured the Applicant’s agenda be victorious. Our objections to this soul-crushingly obnoxious example of architectural terrorism were based on just that fact – how it will impact the surrounding residents negatively. It’s too big. It replaces 5 affordable 1928 bungalow-style homes with three 3-story single-family homes to sell for $4 million each. It is overbuilt to the square inch of its lot size, and presents a 3-story, stark, wall-like facade. Aesthetically it is scaled like a skyscraper plopped down in a village, in relation to my small apartment building across an un-paged alley, where I have been a renter since 2004. It is incongruous and intimidating in scale to the rest of the small single story bungalows and cottage styled homes. The bait-and switch was revealed through the Hearing process to us – probably the only people at the Hearing who were NOT informed – that the basis of our complaint which had been accepted grounds for Appeal had been secretly nullified. None of us were ever informed via the email system that has been used (incompetently and spradically to be sure) all along. Apparently the “notification” was posted on the Council website? With no prior notification to the community resident group? So none of us knew. I’d say this process was carried out in a high-handed and definitely suspicious manner to ensure that the Applicant would prevail. I am a college professor at CalState Dominguez Hills since 2001 and I am NOT stupid, but I learned a lot about abusive practices within L.A. City Council Planning, in the last years here in Venice, and how the developers are swallowing up affordable housing, with the City doing NOTHING about enforcing the rights of the citizen taxpayers of, in this case – Venice. I, and the rest of the residents are outraged that we spent previous Hearings and hours of our private time arguing for a cause that was obviously – from the very filing of the Applicant’s project – a done deal. I will not vote for any politician whom I learn was in elective office in my district who has been a party to this outright colonization of my neighborhood by outside (off-shore Hong Kong in the case of 1900 Penmar) developers looking to make a fast $12 million in a quick-flip deal, and thereby ruining my quality of life as well as the entire community’s. We are on the correct side of the literal colonization of our neighborhoods and your office is apparently ineffectual in righting this wrong. We are the aggrieved parties.

    Thank you for showing and speaking up for us but the City needs to change your building regulations before this travesty becomes a precedent in LA County.

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