An option to amend a redevelopment lease for a proposed Del Rey Shores project on Via Marina was recommended by three of four Small Craft Harbor Commission members, with one member abstaining.
The recommendation means that the proposed project will now move forward for consideration by the Los Angeles County Board of Supervisors.
Small Craft Harbor Commission chair Harley Searcy and members Russ Lesser and Christopher Chuang-I Lin voted yes, and Albert Landini, Jr. abstained from voting on the Del Rey Shores lease at the commission meeting Thursday, October 19th, in the Burton Chace Park Community Building in Marina del Rey.
Questions during public comment about the fair and reasonable rate of return, the land value per square foot, the financial benefit to the county and other questions led to questioning the rationale of amending the Del Rey Shores lease when all of the lease negotiation facts are not available to the Small Craft Harbor Commission, nor to the public, until the lease has been approved.
Landini said the questions about the financial details were fair and he decided to abstain from voting.
The proposed Del Rey Shores project consists of a 544-unit apartment complex, with 12 75-foot-tall, five-story residential buildings.
All required parking for the project would be located on-site, with the addition of ten public beach parking spaces.
TRANSPORTATION PROJECTS — In other business, completed and proposed transportation improvements in the Marina del Rey area were presented by Barry Kurtz, Los Angeles County Beaches and Harbors transportation engineer consultant in his quarterly report on traffic mitigation measures for the Marina del Rey area.
Completed transportation improvements projects mentioned in the Kurtz presentation included:
— Automated traffic surveillance and control system (ATSAC) equipment has been installed at all of the signalized intersections along Admiralty Way and Via Marina to improve traffic signal synchronization.
— An engineering and traffic survey was conducted on Fiji Way at the request of the West Los Angeles California Highway Patrol, and the current 35-mile-per-hour posted speed limit will remain the same; a radar enforcement sign has been installed on Fiji Way.
— Bluff Creek Road from Lincoln Boulevard to Centinela Avenue was constructed by Playa Vista, and the connection at Lincoln Boulevard is expected to be completed in 2006.
— Widening of Centinela Avenue with two lanes in each direction and left-turn lanes has been completed.
Transportation projects under construction that Kurtz discussed, with agency and expected completion date in parentheses, include:
— addition of a separate northbound right-turn lane on Lincoln Boulevard at Mindanao Way (Playa Vista, 2006);
— addition of a third through lane in each direction on Lincoln Boulevard from Bali Way to 83rd Street (Caltrans, mid-2007);
— addition of a fourth northbound lane on Lincoln Boulevard from La Tijera Boulevard to LMU Drive (Caltrans, 2007);
— grade separation over State Route 90 (Marina Freeway) and interchange construction (Caltrans spring 2007) with plant establishment taking another year;
— widening of Centinela Avenue ramps, modifying signals at the interchange and construction of sound walls along the north side of the State Route 90 (Marina Freeway) between Centinela Avenue and Ballona Creek (Caltrans, winter 2006);
— San Diego Freeway (I-405) high occupancy vehicle lanes from the Santa Monica Freeway (I-10) to State Route 90 (Marina Freeway), construction of 3.6 miles of high occupancy vehicle lanes northbound and southbound on I-405, and construct sound walls for noise mitigation (Caltrans, fall 2007); and
— San Diego Freeway (I-405) high-occupancy vehicle lanes northbound and southbound from State Route 90 (Marina Freeway) on the Century Boulevard Freeway (I-105), and construction of sound walls for noise mitigation (Caltrans winter 2006).
Regarding other traffic mitigation, Kurtz explained that delays by Caltrans on Lincoln Boulevard construction were due in part to environmental factors — two nesting birds which are now gone — and a delay by Southern California Edison in removing lights northbound on Lincoln Boulevard to Mindanao Way from Fiji Way to Bali Way.
Kurtz said that construction of a riparian corridor under Lincoln Boulevard entails building a box culvert for animals to cross under Lincoln Boulevard, and the project should be completed by December 2007.
NORTH ENTRANCE CHANNEL DREDGING — County Sheriff’s Lt. Greg Nelson said that the northern entrance to the Marina Harbor is now 65 percent occluded, and is scheduled to be dredged beginning in early December.
The dredging by the U.S. Army Corps of Engineers will necessitate closing the northern entrance of the harbor entirely.
Nelson also said that boaters need to be aware of the buoys in the northern part of the harbor because boaters are attempting to get around the buoys and getting stuck in the silted area, and then have to have their boats pulled out of the silt.
The dredging project consists of removing an estimated 255,000 cubic meters of clean sand and sediment from the Marina’s north entrance in the 2006-2007 fall and winter months.
The sand will be placed offshore at Dockweiler State Beach in the “Kilgore area.”
In order to dredge as much clean material as possible, the Department of Beaches and Harbors will be presenting a cost-sharing agreement to the Board of Supervisors that will allocate $1.6 million to be provided by the county in addition to the $1.4 million already allocated for the project by the Corps of Engineers, according to county documents.
To avoid environmental impacts, the dredging operation will likely be on a 24-hour, six-day-a-week schedule in order for the work to be completed by March 15th.
MARINA HARBOR LIVEABOARDS — County Sheriff’s Sgt. Mike Carriles said that his department has contacted every marina in the Marina del Rey harbor for a list of registered liveaboards, and is checking every boat for a registration permit.
Carriles said one of the problems in the past has been that a liveaboard might get a new boat or move to one of the other marinas in the harbor, and have two permits.
Currently, Carriles said, there are 333 registered liveaboards, and 100 of them have been verified.
A total of 4,755 vessels are currently in the Marina harbor, said Carriles.
During public comment, a number of speakers addressed the problem of liveaboards being evicted from docks and the fact that liveaboards want the same rights as apartment tenants.
During public comment, commission chair Searcy suggested that a representative of the Los Angeles County Department of Consumer Affairs attend a Small Craft Harbor Commission meeting to advise on mediation and the state law governing such voluntary mediation.
A member of the public said that the Marina is taking a “gentrification” direction and defined gentrification as “people being displaced.”
He said that if something moves in any direction, something else is displaced, and that regardless of how beautiful the finished project might be, the net result would be that a number of former tenants would become homeless because they couldn’t afford to stay.