Meeting Date: 10/22/14 06:00 PM
Meeting Type: Regular
Location: Will & Ariel Durant Library-7140 Sunset Blvd, LA 90046
Interactive Workshop Area 7
Area 7-Housing-Business-Infrastructure Committees
Wednesday, October 22, 2014
6:00pm to 7:50pm
Will & Ariel Durant Library-7140 Sunset Blvd
This first Area 7 Interactive Workshop is to get your input for developing position papers on Stakeholder Priorities in Area 7.
Note: Individual projects will not be discussed or presented.
1. Call to order
2. Introductions and purpose of workshop
3. Update on current and future development in Area 7
a. Update on feedback from stakeholders
b. Overview of top issues
c. Breakout groups per issue (see below)
d. Reporting out by group
e. Next Steps
- What types of public space should be provided by new development ?
- What guidelines should be set for building heights, set backs and size ?
- How do you define Safety for our area ?
- What is your image of the Area 7 Hollywood aesthetic ?
- What types of businesses will support walkable streets ?
Bring your ideas and suggestions! All Area 7 stakeholders are invited and welcome! We hope to see you Wednesday, October 22, 2014
Hollywood Hills West Neighborhood Council Area 7
Area 7 Chair, Barbara Witkin
Housing Chair, Jo Ann Koplin
Business Chair, Oren Katz
Infrastructure Chair, Casey Maddren
The meeting was called to order at 6pm with approximately 20 stakeholders present. Each participant was asked to fill out the list of issues (check list) developed by Housing Chair, JoAnn Koplin. Each participant identified their top 5 priorities.
Seven topics were identified for discussion at the workshop.
The group was divided into small groups of 3-5 at separate tables and asked to discuss the issue assigned to their table.
The issues assigned included:
2. Walkable Streets
5. Landscape and Open Space
Each team then presented their issue to the entire group and additional thoughts from the full group were added. Each stakeholder was then asked to vote for their NUMBER ONE issue.
Safety is key to any neighborhood and can be defined in different ways. This team identified the following things believed to increase safety along commercial streets and in adjacent neighborhoods.
– More Street Lighting
– Reduction of Liquor/ bar hours
o 11 am week days
o 12 am weekends
– Restrict rooftop noise in both residential and commercial
– Security cameras for all new developments
– Better crosswalks with striping and pavement light strips
– Wider Sidewalks :
New development should be required to set back the building to allow a wider sidewalk
– Less Alcohol sales
– More Family friendly restaurants
Discussion focused on what residents would like to see within walking distance. What types of environments get people out of their car to enjoy walking along commercial streets. The following design elements were identified as positive enhancements for Sunset Blvd.
– More pedestrian lighting
– Wider sidewalks
– Landscaped sidewalks
– Shops serving families and neighborhood
– Store front display windows
– “Curb bulbs” at corners
– Sidewalk bike racks
– Parkway landscaping
– Recess and limit sidewalk dining that encroaches on the public way
– Pedestrians have priority
– Clean streets/ dog poop bag stations
Concern was shared about how to protect the historic buildings in both residential and commercial areas of Hollywood.
– Enforcement of HPOZ regulations in Spaulding Square
– Approval of more HPOZ zones to protect resources- Sunset Square
– Preservation of existing heights and historic details in commercial areas
– Keeping historic signs & facades as a development condition
– Preservation of community/ civic institutions
– Tree preservation
– I. D. historic buildings: work more closely with Hollywood Heritage
Developers typically design buildings to the highest density allowed and look for ways to qualify for density bonuses to increase the size of their buildings. This group reviewed the reasons why an increased density in Area 7 could be problematic. Concerns included:
– Traffic : Streets are already congested. More residents = more cars
– Parking: Parking is already a problem and adding residential with a reduced parking requirement increases the problem. Min. parking should be 2 per unit, no matter the size.
– Existing number of empty apartment units does not indicate a need for more.
– Allowing mixed use projects on a commercial street
– Overbuilding residential to generate max income
– Impact on infrastructure: water lines, sewers, electrical
– Proximity to metro should not allow an increase in density
– Hours of operation for establishments serving alcohol getting too late
– Commercial uses are “creeping” down side streets into residential neighborhoods.
Landscape- Open Space
There is a lack of public green space in Area 7. With no parks or public gathering areas. Ways to increase open space was discussed. Ideas included:
– Need wider sidewalk with green strips buffer between street & sidewalk
– Added Street trees
– More small "pocket parks"
– Protect existing parks
– Landscape with drought tolerant plans
– Use parkways for gardens
– Rooftop gardens
– Vertical Green walls
– Request green space from new development (residential and commercial)
The scale of buildings in relation to their neighborhood is of importance to area 7 stakeholders. The Hollywood Hills West Area 7 neighborhood has both high and low scale areas and hopes to maintain some of the historic quality of the original neighborhoods. While Spaulding Square has been able to protect the neighborhood through an HPOZ, single family homes north of Sunset are not protected.
Most of the commercial buildings along Sunset Blvd do not exceed three or four stories and most of them remain as two-story structures. New developments proposing 5 to 7-story structures will significantly change the scale of the Boulevard.
In response to this, stakeholders identified the criteria for scale that they would like to see imposed on new development.
– Reduce building heights
o Max 2 stories in residential areas
o Max 3 stories along Sunset
o No roof top decks on single family homes or apt buildings
o Maintain existing heights as much as possible
o Stay in proportion to existing surrounding buildings
o Maximize set backs from the street- increase sidewalk width along Sunset
o Maximize side setbacks 6 ft min
o Maximize rear setbacks for commercial/ residential buffer to 10 ft
o Driveways: min 12 ft
o Building size in proportion to lot size FAR: 1:1 for Commercial
o No variances, exceptions, or bonuses that allow over scaled buildings
The parking group engaged in a long debate about the pros and cons for permit parking. Some felt that the streets should remain public and opposed the concept of permit parking. Others argued that as long as permit parking is allowed, it puts an unreasonable hardship on street residents who have not been able to qualify with 100% signatures.
– more city run public parking structures in commercial areas (like those in Beverly Hills)
– Reduction in allowed density for apartments and condos and no density bonuses
– Increased number of parking spaces required for individual units Min. 2 per unit.
– Increased parking requirement for retail spaces in mixed use developments
Stakeholder participants were thanked for their valuable time and all agreed to continue the discussion in another workshop to be scheduled next month. Emails will be sent to all who signed up to stay involved.
Density and Scale were identified as the top two issues. A follow up meeting will be scheduled to focus on those two issues and develop a HHWNC position paper.