Meeting Date: 12/10/14 06:15 PM

Meeting Type: Special

Location: Will & Ariel Durant Library

Details: Hollywood Hills West Neighborhood Council
 
Infrastructure & Housing Joint Meeting
 
Community Forum: Density and Scale in Hollywood
 
Wednesday, December 10, 2014, 6:15 pm
Will & Ariel Durant Library, 7140 W. Sunset Boulevard
 
Agenda
 
 
The purpose of this meeting is to receive comments from the public regarding the City of LA's efforts to increase density and scale in Hollywood, including projects such as 8150 Sunset Blvd., 7500 Sunset Blvd. and 7107 Hollywood Blvd..  Comments received during the meeting will form the basis for a position paper on density and scale to be prepared for the Hollywood Hills West Neighborhood Council.
 
Public comments on agenda items will be heard when the item is considered. Public comments on other matters within the committee's jurisdiction may be made during the Public Comment period. Public comments are limited to two minutes per speaker; That limit may be modified at the discretion of the committee. Speakers are requested to sign in at the meeting. Action may be taken on any agenda item except Public Comment, announcements and reports. You may request a copy of printed materials that are distributed at the meeting. You may record the meeting by audio, video or photographic means as long as it is not disruptive. If you need translation or accommodation for a disability, please call the city Department of Neighborhood Empowerment at least three business days in advance (213-978-1551, or tollfree 3-1-1). The city is a covered entity under Title II of the Americans with Disabilities Act. If you believe the council is not following the law or its own rules you may file a grievance in writing with copies to both the Chair and the Secretary. The HHWNC bylaws can be found at www.hhwnc.org.
 
 
Call to Order
 
Welcome/Introduction
Explanation of meeting’s purpose.
Pass out worksheets.
 
Density
Invite attendees to offer opinions on density in Hollywood area.
As part of discussion, ask attendees to write responses on form.
 
Scale
Invite attendees to offer opinions on scale in Hollywood area.
As part of discussion, ask attendees to write responses on form.
 
Collect worksheets.
 
Adjourn
 

MINUTES

                                                        
Hollywood Hills West Neighborhood Council
 
Joint Sub-Committee Meeting
Infrastructure & Housing
                                        
Community Forum: Density and Scale in Hollywood
                                                     
Wednesday, December 10, 2014, 6:15 PM
Will & Ariel Durant Library
7140 W. Sunset Blvd.
 
 
 
Casey Maddren, Infrastructure Chair: 
Calls the Meeting to Order 6:15 PM.
 
JoAnn Koplin, Housing Chair:
Welcomes and thanks stakeholders (about 30) for coming. 
Thanks  Casey, Cheri Smith (stakeholder), and Annie Gagen (youth chair) for helping put the meeting together.  The focus tonight will be Density and Scale in Hollywood.
 
Casey mentions  this forum came out of discussions in The PLUM Committee that we need to be more pro-active as a community.  Asks what do we want Hollywood to look like?
Casey hands out worksheets for stakeholders to fill out with the topics, Density on one side, Scale on the other.  Explains  position paper will be written from information gathered tonight. 
 
DENSITY DISCUSSION
 
For purposes of clarity, stakeholder comments are italicized.
 
Casey: Many are questioning if we're not too dense, i.e. proposed Millennium Hollywood project.
 
Stakeholders:
-8150 Sunset Blvd…water ..massive amounts of water will be used.
 
-TOD's are a scam..Read the Wendell Cox article..TOD's increase density.
 
-Density needs to be managed.
 
-Architecture..Sunset Blvd. is revolting. It's one of the most iconic streets in the world. 
 
-Architecture should be addressed.
 
Casey: Yes, we'll discuss more on Architecture at another meeting
 
Stakeholders:
-Maintain human scale
 
-Development height and street front should be considered
 
-Hollywood is a District and has different areas.
 
Casey suggests stakeholders speak about the area they live in. 
 
JoAnn: Suggests we talk about developments.  Is the mixed use concept what you want?
 
Stakeholders:
-Studies should be based on facts. The 1915 transit study was done by engineers, not developers, based on math and geography, debunks  subway, and mass transit. 
-Transit Oriented Density (TOD):  TOD does not work according to San Jose Study.
-TOD  forced many  families out of Hollywood, according to Wendell Cox article.
-Hollywood has reached the density tipping point.
-Use census data.  Density discussion needs to be based on facts.
 
Casey: Census data shows Hollywood population actually decreased between 2000 and 2010, not increased as asserted by Hollywood Community Plan Update.  Does anyone see justification for more density?
 
Stakeholders:
-Data is to convince one side or the other.
-Millennium contributed to politicians.
-What do we do about this?
-When do we take a stand?
 
-EIR's..make sure all data goes into the EIR's
 
-HHWNC Vice-Chair Cyd Zeigler suggested that stakeholders let developer reps know what we want.
 
-Mixed Use.  I'm seeing impacts with traffic/more cars. Businesses are drawing massive amounts of parking.
 
-Emergency Services concerns.  Approximately 40,000 coming into nightclubs, etc. Resources are stretched thinner and thinner.  Thousands are flooding  down from the hills.  Response times are difficult, emergency vehicles can't get through the traffic.  What can we recommend that is safe?
 
-There is 'Smart Growth' pressure and Hollywood is the dumping ground.
 
-Earthquakes.  If you know there's an earthquake fault, why build there?  8150 Sunset project is 3 feet near an active earthquake fault.
 
 
SCALE DISCUSSION
 
JoAnn explains Scale:
Scale relates to size, both in terms of height and square footage.  Setbacks and stepbacks are important considerations.  Form is also important, as is neighborhood context.
 
Stakeholders:
-Townscape (8150 Sunset project) says there's nothing of historical significance there.
 
-No deference to Historic Character.
 
-About Scale.  Zev Yaroslavsky in 1987 had Prop U on the ballot.  7 out of 10 people voted for it.  It was to keep developments lower rise.  Voters wanted slower growth..not  these high density, high rise, over scale developments.
-City is currently pursuing Re:Code LA to redefine zoning framework. You can go to the website. It will make it easier for  developers to change zoning, etc. It will be  a 'by right' city to accommodate developers.  How will communities be able to protect themselves then?
 
-Scale on nationally designated historic Hollywood Blvd. is changing. Hollywood Heritage says L.A. can lose  Hollywood Blvd.'s National Historic Designation if buildings like  Hollywood Warner Pacific Theatre get demolished for high rises by the developer who now owns the property. It's a Historic Cultural Monument and L.A. Historic Theatre Foundation, Hollywood Heritage, etc. are  trying to save it.  Are high rises the right scale for historic Hollywood Blvd.?
 
-The Avenue on La Brea is architecturally hideous and has no sense of scale, no context. And it is still not full.
 
-Single units are going up all over
-Developers get what they want and we are paying for it.
-We are funding our own  take over.
 
-SB 1818 – Says a certain percentage of the housing needs to be affordable housing.  Developers go to city hall and get huge tax breaks.  We need a dedicated group who knows all the codes backwards and forwards.  They're using our money to fight us.
 
-Hollywood is being turned into a Dormitory.  High-price units encourage renters to share their apartments.
 
-There are more cars than parking spaces.
 
Recap..JoAnn:
We're unhappy. We don't believe municipal codes are working. About working with developers, as Cyd recommended, how do we get developers to do the right thing?
 
Stakeholders:
-Developers will build to the max
 
-Hollywood has to study downzoning.
 
-The Communities must be involved in the plans, the process.
 
-City Planning Dept. is not doing their job.
 
Three developer reps in attendance spoke briefly about their projects.
 
Casey asks everyone to please fill out the density/scale worksheets handed out.
 
JoAnn reminds everyone to submit their comments for 7500 Sunset Blvd. project. The deadline is Friday.
 
Casey: The Key is Communicating.
             
Important: Don't forget HHWNC will hold be holding a CD4 Candidate Forum.
             
Meeting adjourned at 7:55 PM.
 
Minutes submitted by Annie Gagen.
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