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Projects at Lincoln, Broadway Might Grow

Concerned about parking, Santa Monica City Council holds off on approving requests to add more commercial space to the projects.

Developer NMS Properties, Inc. is applying to expand two of its mixed-use projects at Lincoln Boulevard and Broadway Street with the addition of more commercial space.

The requests are to add nearly 6,000 square feet—likely to house a bank—at a project currently under construction at 1447 Lincoln and about 4,000 square feet to an existing five-story building at 829 Broadway.

But it was concerns about residential parking that have given the Santa Monica City Council pause.

Smaller versions of the projects were already approved by the city, but the request for added space triggers the need for a development agreement OK'd by the City Council. Under those agreements, the council can require changes and so-called community benefits, such as payments for street improvements.

Both projects are designated for tenants with low incomes, but none of the leases for the units—tiny studios and one-bedrooms—will include on-site parking spaces.

Some members of the council, and a couple of residents, said Tuesday night that as proposed, the projects would further cramp parking in the already congested neighborhood.

"If they charge 200 per month for parking as an amenity, all the sudden the affordability goes way down," said councilwoman Gleam Davis.

"We really need to be very careful about this, we could set dangerous precedent establishing which amenities come with affordable units," she continued.

In approving a separate mixed-use project for downtown in December, the council was OK no parking whatsoever. Some council members said they hoped it would encourage Santa Monica residents to walk and bike.

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On Tuesday, Davis also raised concerns about the apartments mainly being small, single units—an issue the council has continually raised when reviewing new developments.

"We really need to be very careful about mix of units going into these developments," she said. "I understand we have a market here in Santa Monica that has a number of different type of people looking for housing, including young singles who want an [studio], but also includes families who want more than a pony wall one bedroom."

The development agreements will be on the council’s agenda again in July.

CTS June 28, 2012 at 04:13 AM
No parking spaces included because "some council members" hoped it would "encourage residents to walk and bike." Yes, because that's all that's missing. Encouragement. Let's just ignore the reality of the situation and continue to "encourage" everyone by packing as many sardines into the can as we can. Because if we "encourage" everyone to ride and walk, well then, families of five, elderly couples, people running multiple errands on opposite sides of town and every last one of the THOUSANDS upon THOUSANDS of non residents that come into Santa Monica every work day will find the inspiration to stop driving. I propose that the city gets rid of ALL the parking spaces, then everyone would be properly encouraged to just sell their cars all together.
Dee Cappelli June 29, 2012 at 01:48 AM
I've lived in Santa Monica 22 yrs. and love it because I can walk everywhere but I think some Council members live in a dream world when it comes to plans based on human behavior. Those who can afford to live in those horrendously ugly buildings will likely have a job elsewhere and a car to get them there. They will not take public transportation to Beverly Hills, Culver City, Hollywood, etc.. I've attended Planning Commission and Architectural Review Board meetings where staff insist a structure capable of housing 30+ people in million dollar condos will replace a structure that currently holds 5, and heard their claim that traffic will not increase because the new building's mythical residents will walk to the grocery, theater, restaurant, beach, etc. No. They won't. If you can afford to pay for a million dollar condo, you already own a high end car and you don't leave it in the garage while you walk around the 8.2 square miles of Santa Monica. I walk around Santa Monica because I love to walk, it's great exercise and I can walk anywhere in the city faster than if I drove. However, I would never expect, predict or plan on anyone else making the same choice. I have friends in Santa Monica who drive from 6th to 20th St. because they like to drive their car. That's the reality of human nature and our car-based culture. I wish City Council would come down to planet "Reality" when it involves human behavior.
Brenda Barnes February 04, 2013 at 03:03 AM
What a great comment! Nice to read some realism based on experience for a change, instead of being talked down to by people who think only they understand the oh-so-difficult concepts of encouraging people to stop driving. People have stopped driving so much mainly b/c it has gotten so much more expensive, so increasing the gas tax by 10 times would "encourage" them to drive even less, and until the people doing that were replaced, would bring in some revenue. The remainders of the Bloom City Council could join them in the unemployment line..
Brenda Barnes February 04, 2013 at 03:05 AM
Notice NMS, the leader of the PAC that paid $345,000 for Davis and O'Day's reelection, is the beneficiary of this no-parking scam.

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