July 15 2007
SMCLC asks residents to support building moratorium
Dear SMCLC supporter:
Development pressures on Santa Monica are relentless. While developers make huge amounts of money, residents pay the cost in increased traffic and decreased quality of life due to congestion and high-density construction. Do developers care if residents are negatively impacted by their projects? Why should they, unless residents force them to care?
Santa Monica's general plan is supposed to control what development is allowedand where. But ours is over 23 years old, hopelessly outdated, and our new one is not going to be done until 2009.
This means that projects which might never be allowed under our new plan, are being approved by the city every day. Unless we close this gap, it won't make any difference what's in the new plan when it's finally finished.
Fortunately, there is a solution. The law gives Santa Monica the right to adopt a moratorium to stop approving building permits until it finishes its land-use and circulation updates and determines exactly what growth should occur and where.
Recently, SMCLC and representatives from every neighborhood organization, met with city officials to urge them to adopt such a moratorium. We urged the city to say "no" now to projects that probably won't be allowed under our future plan. We agreed that single family residential projects, senior care facilities, and some affordable housing projects should be allowed to proceed, but little else.
Next, we presented forceful arguments to the Planning Commission describing where we see the greatest development pressure in the city, and how the moratorium would work. Several Commission members complimented us on the persuasiveness of our presentation and its detail. View the webcast (It starts at 5:42 and goes until 6:43).
NOW WE NEED YOU.
This Wednesday July 18, the Planning Commission will vote on a moratorium. They will be urging the City Council to take action to close this growing development gap.
PLEASE WRITE THE COMMISSION MEMBERS A NOTE OR AN EMAIL.
Your own words are best. Tell them how you feel about development in our city and lend your support to a building moratorium until our city's new general plan is complete.
You can use our website post office feature to send emails to the Planning Commission (one click sends to them all). Alternatively, write the commissioners individually at their email addresses below and cc us (email@example.com) so we can keep track of just how many emails they get.
Gwynne Pugh, Chair
Thanks for helping with this very important work,
A recent SM Daily Press poll asked readers about the moratorium. Residents unanimously called in to say that they were in favor of such a plan... read
Santa Monica Dispatch prints the SMCLC request for support