December 19, 2011
MAYOR VILLARAIGOSA SENDS HOLLYWOOD COMMUNITY PLAN TO CITY COUNCIL
Comprehensive Land-Use Blueprint Preserves Neighborhood Character, Cuts Red Tape, and Promotes Transit Oriented Development
LOS ANGELES – Mayor Antonio Villaraigosa announced on Monday that he is sending the Hollywood Community Plan – a comprehensive land-use blueprint which recently cleared the City Planning Commission– to City Council. The plan is a major component of the Mayor’s development reform agenda to cut red tape and make it easier to create jobs.
“This is the first update of the Hollywood Community Plan in more than two decades,” said Mayor Villaraigosa. “Up until now, planning has been done in piecemeal fashion. Under this new community plan, the growth of Hollywood will be guided by a comprehensive blueprint that cuts red tape, preserves neighborhood character, and accommodates growth around transit corridors.”
Mayor Villaraigosa made his announcement on the rooftop of the historic Hollywood Tower apartment building in front of a sweeping view of the Hollywood Sign. He was joined at the event by City Council President Eric Garcetti, Councilmember Tom LaBonge, City Planning Director Michael LoGrande and representatives from the area's neighborhood council and business community.
Community plans are land use policy documents that guide the physical development of the City’s neighborhoods by designating land for particular uses such as housing, business, industry, and open space. Community plans also direct the physical form and density of new development. The Hollywood area is one of 35 regions in Los Angeles with its own community plan.
As virtually every part of Los Angeles continues to grow, one piece remains fixed: the supply of land. That’s why Mayor Villaraigosa is committed to using land more efficiently to accommodate growth while enhancing quality of life.
The Hollywood Community Plan moves Los Angeles closer to a vision of transit-oriented development while preserving neighborhood character. The Planning Department prioritized community input, holding over 150 meetings with stakeholders.
When the Hollywood Community Plan was last updated, there were no Metro stops in Hollywood. In the years since then, five Metro stops have opened in the area, connecting residents and businesses to Downtown and the San Fernando Valley. Thanks to voter approval of the Measure R half-penny sales tax in 2008, Los Angeles is doubling the size of its rail network over the next 30 years further increasing mobility options.
Hollywood has taken major steps forward under the old community plan, adding marquee attractions such as Hollywood & Highland and the W Hotel, but the revitalization of the area has been slowed by an outdated community plan which resulted in builders going to the City Planning Commission and the City Council to amend the community plan for each transit-oriented development that exceeded the outdated restrictions imposed in 1988. This drawn-out process made it more expensive to invest in the area, hindering its revitalization. Under the new Hollywood Community Plan, there will be greater clarity at the outset about what sort of development is appropriate around transit corridors, and where future development should be directed.
“We hear over and over again from the builder community that ambiguity and uncertainty hinders revitalization,” said Kerry Morrison, the executive director of the Hollywood Property Owners Alliance. “In this uncertain economy, providing more clarity about the plan for the future invites investment back in. And that means new jobs and more opportunities.”
While accommodating growth around transit corridors, the Hollywood Community Plan simultaneously protects Hollywood’s environmentally sensitive hillside communities from over-development and preserves the single-family character of Hollywood’s low-density neighborhoods. The plan also encourages studios to stay in Hollywood by protecting the light industrial zoning of the media district in the Santa Monica Boulevard and Highland Avenue area.
As a General Plan amendment, the Municipal Code requires the Mayor’s approval or disapproval of the Hollywood Plan prior to City Council review. Next, the plan will be presented to the City Council’s Planning and Land Use Management Committee, which will hold a hearing on the matter, with full City Council consideration to follow.
For all of the proposed Plan documents, please see: http://cityplanning.lacity.org/cpu/hollywood/HwdPlanUpdates.