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Venice Update

News of Venice, CA and Marina del Rey CA

Metro holds first open house for MTA site envisioning by Venetians


Three groups on one side of the room.

Metro Joint Development met with Venetians for first time to obtain input as to what they would like on the  MTA lot at Sunset between Pacific and Main.

Names can get confusing. Metro is the shortened name for the Metropolitan Transit Authority. MTA is an even shorter version of that and has been deemed the name for the site. Metro refers to the project in Venice as Metro 6.

Wells Lawson, spokesperson, gave the opening introduction to explain that Metro had 30 projects in planning and Metro wanted to know what Venetians wanted on the 3.1 acres (136,000 square feet) presently zoned industrial and in their neighborhood and formerly known as the Bus Yard and now MTA site.

Metro wanted to know what the makeup of the group they were addressing so they passed out recording response calculators that compiled answers and within seconds were displayed on a screen in bar charts for all to see.  Some of the questions were what percentage of your income went for housing, your age, how long you had lived in Venice, etc.

People were assigned to a table with a facilitator who led the questions pertaining to what Venetians specifically envisioned for the space.  There were five to six tables consisting of 10 to 12 people.

Some of the people were very skeptical because the Mayor, the Councilman and two supervisors are all on the board of the Metro.  One person mentioned he felt it was a done deal because of this makeup.  The facilitator at one table said it wasn’t and explained that the Metro projects normally had 35 percent affordable housing.  Venetians feel they have not had any say in the previous homeless developments in Venice so some were expecting the worst.

Each group appointed a spokesperson and the spokesperson or person summarized what the group at his/her table had wanted and what they hadn’t wanted. No one seemed to object to affordable housing and market rate housing.  Places for artists was mentioned to preserve the heritage of Venice.   Many spokespeople mentioned mixed use and a meeting place for the community with sufficient parking. One wanted it larger than Westminster. Size of the meeting place differed.  Height was discussed and became a yes and no for extra height.  One group mentioned that it would be nice if they provided additional parking for the neighboring community both commercial and residential as well as adequate parking for their site. The PIA/MIA wall was mentioned and it was agreed that it needed to be preserved. PSH housing was never mentioned as a desirable option; in fact, several people said they didn’t want it.

Next meeting will be 1 December, 10 am to noon at the Boys and Girls Club of Venice, 2232 Lincoln Blvd. An open house will be held in 2019 to present the findings from this process.

If unable to attend the meeting in person, comments can also be provided online at metro.net/division6.  For more questions or more information, contact Metro’s project manager: Olvia Segura, 213-922-7156, division6@metro.ne

Comment (1)

  1. 2afraid2postmyname

    (BTW, just curious– is “Councilman” still living in MV, as last I heard, and is he still NOT a resident of VB? Hmmm…)

    I digress. This Metro topic reminds me of an epic-length forum on the dearly-departed “Yo!” (before its comments were disabled and forums shut down) around two years ago, around this same time of year, if I remember correctly: what in the world to do about that pesky MTA depot.

    In 10+ (!!!) web pages of user comments, all sorts of ideas were brought to the table about Metro 6. “Bridge” (ha! disaster waiting to happen) housing, “low-income artists” (LMAO! never gonna happen) housing, pretty little public park of organic veggies & free-love-flowers… the posts went on and on, with all sorts of Venetians crawling out of the woodwork, some commenting for the first time ever, because everybody truly wanted to work this one out, once and for all. That Metro lot is huge, and what happens to it indelibly will impact VB.

    Ideas were tossed and bantered; occasionally, tempers flared; at one point, “words were exchanged” between a few emotional LTRs… but, ultimately, the collective decision seemed to conclude, for the best of Venice: keep that property as it already is– A PARKING LOT!


    Preference would be given to VB residents (in enormous need of parking spaces currently usurped by tourists & Silicon commuters,) parking fees would be collected from said tourists and “Silicon Campus” commuters) and would go to fund the lot’s upkeep and beloved VB’s cleanliness & safety… done. Seemed pretty simple then, and seems to me pretty simple now.

    If the Metro wants to hear “…the makeup of the group they were addressing so they passed out recording response calculators that compiled answers…”
    Me? How do I fit Metro’s quota?
    * 40+ SWF.
    * 10 years in Oakwood, gentri-f**ked out of VB 7 years ago, now 3 blocks outside VB limits.
    * Still in VB every day, walk around my old hood because I will always love it as my (former) home.
    * Income = nowhere near Councilman’s kickbacks from The City for relentlessly taking L.A. (the “Homeless Capital of the USA”) and making VB into the Homeless Capital of L.A.

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