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Venice Planning Committee Approves Abbot Kinney Boulevard Project

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Construction is shown at 1524 Abbot Kinney Blvd. on Oct. 3, 2012, in Venice, Calif.

By Paul Chavez, Venice Dispatch

The Venice Neighborhood Council’s Land Use and Planning Committee voted 6-0 Wednesday night in favor of a zoning change for a project in the 1500 block of Abbot Kinney Boulevard.

The committee endorsed a motion approving the change of use from single-family zoning to retail for a 1910 craftsman-style building at 1524 Abbot Kinney Blvd. The motion called for the applicant, Tami Pardee, to satisfy the requirement of eight parking spaces for the project. Pardee, a principle of Pardee Properties, plans on creating a single-story office for her real estate company.

Pardee bolted from the meeting at the Oakwood Recreation Center during a discussion on the parking requirements after planning committee member Jim Murez said he would file an appeal to the California Coastal Commission, if the parking requirement was satisfied by paying in lieu fees instead of providing actual parking spaces. Pardee later returned and told the committee she was trying to do the right thing and feared she would have to sell the property if a legal battle ensued over the building permit. Committee chair Jake Kaufman worked with Murez on the final motion. The motion’s language would prevent an appeal, if parking is pursued at a nearby property owned by Pardee, or, if the spaces are accounted for at a proposed nearby lot.

“I think it’s good,” Pardee said after the committee’s vote. “I’m happy with it and I’m happy this committee was willing to work with us.”

The matter will go before the Venice Neighborhood Council later this month.

In other developments, committee member Mia Herron said that grocery seller Fresh & Easy likely will present their plans for a new store at the northwest corner of Lincoln Boulevard and Washington Boulevard during the committee’s Nov. 7 meeting. The grocery store received positive feedback during a community outreach event at the Boys & Girls Club of Venice, but there were some concerns over traffic, Herron said.

The committee also drafted letters urging that revenue from new parking meters installed in Venice be earmarked to improve safety and maintenance in Venice. They also drafted a letter that urges the city’s planning department to deny applications or hold them open until applicants provide details on their project to the Venice Neighborhood Council.

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