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California Coastal Commission Approves Venice Beach Zip Line Ride Pilot Program

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The California Coastal Commission voted 7-4 Thursday in favor of a temporary pilot program to install a 750-foot zip line ride this summer on Venice Beach.

A map of the temporary zip line project on Venice Beach approved Thursday, Feb. 7, 2013, by the California Coastal Commission.

A map of the temporary zip line project on Venice Beach approved Thursday, Feb. 7, 2013, by the California Coastal Commission.

Los Angeles City Councilman Bill Rosendahl, whose 11th District includes Venice, addressed the commissioners during their board meeting at the Redondo Beach Civic Center and urged their endorsement for the public-private partnership with Canadian-based Greenheart Conservation Company.

The project was presented by Kevin Regan, assistang general manager of the city’s Department of Parks and Recreation. The zip line project also will include acrobatic classes for children, summer camps and three free public performances, Regan said.

The coastal development permit issued by the California Coastal Commission requires that the zip line be dismantled at the end of the three-month pilot program. A requirement that called for the elimination of the artwork on the 46-foot launching tower and 24-foot landing tower was removed after Regan spoke in favor of the public art component.

Rides on the zip line will cost about $20. The launch tower will be located between the boardwalk and the skatepark  and riders will fly south over Windward Plaza to a landing tower near the basketball courts.

A few speakers urged the commission to reject the project over concerns that it would turn into a permanent structure, would worsen traffic in the area, block ocean views and ruin the serenity of the beach with screaming zip line riders.

The zip line proposal was considered last spring after plans for a 175-foot Ferris wheel on Windward Plaza where rejected by the community. The Venice Neighborhood Council voted 8-6 with three abstentions in favor of the zip line proposal in May 2012.

–Venice Dispatch

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