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Assemblyman Bloom Disappointed in Council's Decision to Ax Hines Project

"he City Council killed a project, seven years in the making, that would have brought significant community benefits to Santa Monica, not the least of which are badly needed housing stock," he said.

The Hines project. From a Santa Monica planning staff’s PowerPoint presentation.
The Hines project. From a Santa Monica planning staff’s PowerPoint presentation.
Assemblyman Richard Bloom today expressed frustration with the Santa Monica City Council for axing Tuesday the so-called Hines project, a 65,000-square-foot residential, office and retail development near the coming Expo Line.

Also known as  Bergamot Transit Village  project, it would have been a mix of uses, including live/work units, 374,423 square feet of retail and office space, new streets, sidewalks, a park, and 1,936 underground parking spaces.

Residents call the nixing a victory. Bloom, D-Santa Monica, disagrees.

Here's what Bloom had to say: 

“I am disappointed by the decision made by the Santa Monica City Council last night. The referendum process exists to give not just some, but all voters an opportunity to debate and be heard. The City Council flatly denied voters that opportunity. In the process, the City Council killed a project, seven years in the making, that would have brought significant community benefits to Santa Monica, not the least of which are badly needed housing stock, including deed restricted affordable housing. 

“Resident concerns about traffic are legitimate subject for debate. In fact, the Hines project embodied the most aggressive traffic reduction strategies the city - indeed, most cities - have ever seen and that would have been a model for other projects. 

“I am proud of the three Councilmembers who refused to "take the bait" and endeavored to protect every voter's right to have a voice - as the Petition gatherers had promised. Regrettably, fear-mongering, misinformation and even bullying around development issues in Santa Monica are reflected in the decision to kill this project and have left our city with a black eye.”

DO YOU SEE HIS POINT? TELL US IN THE COMMENTS.


J Edward Tipre May 15, 2014 at 09:58 PM
It took 100 years to build Santa Monica. The decision stands as a benchmark achievement that could only occur in a municipal setting these days. Still, too much had been approved already (3 million sq feet) which will provide to the city a solid commercial tax base good for the city's bond rating but the despoiling of what was once a calm and affordable beach town for young apartment dwellers and middle class homeowners. We'll see what happens over the next decade with tighter credit markets. This kind of growth should slow. Certainly time to slow down and take a breath.
Tom hays May 16, 2014 at 12:30 AM
It is hard to argue against letting the voters have a say.
Douglas Fay May 16, 2014 at 09:57 AM
On the California Coastal Commission and Santa Monica Bay Restoration Commission Richard Bloom did nothing significant to restore and enhance the Santa Monica Bay, wasting millions of taxpayer dollars on endless studies and projects that are fruitless. As our mayor he approved every growth and traffic inducing project that came before him, several that are undeveloped or under construction that will further impact traffic, parking and overall quality of life when buildout occurs. Thank you Residocracy supporters. You have values that I will bring to the table if elected LA County 3rd District Supervisor. Together, Doug Fay

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