L.A. City's Largest Development Wipes Out Before the Appeals Court
Ballona Developers Not Only Lose Their Building Permits and EIR, They Lose Their High Density Zoning
The full 114 page ruling may be read at the Court’s website: http://www.courtinfo.ca.gov/opinions/nonpub/B189630.DOC
Read the full press release: http://ballona.blogspot.com/2007/09/playa-vista-loses-huge-case-to.html
The Court Ruled in favor of the environmental group plaintiffs on three issues. The following is the issue won by BEEP:
THE FALSE DOWNZONING (ISSUE IS IN BEEP’S CASE) :
The Land Use impact analysis that the court found so troubling was that the project was claimed as a huge downzoning, and therefore a huge down-sizing of impacts to the surrounding communities compared to a project Playa Vista claimed they were legally entitled to build. Playa
The reason Playa Vista claimed they were entitled to such a huge project was based on proposals they had made in the 1990’s. However, the Court agreed with BEEP that Playa Vista had used up those development rights in their 300-plus acre First Phase project approved in 1993 and 1995, , which was marked by controversies over wetlands, endangered species, traffic and a huge taxpayer-subsidized benefit package granted by then-Governor Pete Wilson and then-Mayor Richard Riordan.
Because Playa Vista and the City claimed that the zoning of the land allowed such a huge amount of development, it tainted the review of the legally mandated alternatives to the project, such as a regional park or wetlands restoration, by making them all “infeasible” due to the cost of buying the land.
The Court’s action returns the zoning on the land back to the 108,000 square foot office building that was the true zoning at the beginning of the EIR process.
Rex Frankel, Director of the Ballona Ecosystem Education Project stated, “If Playa Vista wants to build more than that, they will have to honestly admit to the public what they want and why they should be granted such a huge upzoning gift by the City Council, and why they deserve even more corporate welfare than they got in their first phase project. This victory for the people of
Briefs in BEEP's case can be found on their website, http://saveallofballona.org/
Tax deductible donations to BEEP’s legal fund can be mailed to BEEP at