The developer of a proposed redevelopment project at the Villa Marina Marketplace called Ocean Walk appeared before the Del Rey Neighborhood Council Planning and Land Use Committee Thursday, January 20th, to propose a change to the development access.

The Olson Company proposes redeveloping a portion of the Villa Marina Marketplace — east of Lincoln Boulevard and south of Maxella Avenue in the Marina area — by constructing 310 residential units and 9,000 square feet of retail space at 13480 and 13490 Maxella Ave., and 4350, 4356 and 4358 Lincoln Blvd.

The project would cover 3.87 acres and involve redeveloping the portion of the shopping center where Carl’s Jr., Kinko’s, Chan Darette restaurant and Marie Callender’s restaurant are currently located.

Mark Redick, land use committee chair, said the committee had expressed concern about the plans — which proposed having access to the development behind the Chan Darette restaurant, 13490 Maxella Ave. — because of the potential for high congestion and gridlock in the area.

The Olson Company proposes moving the originally proposed access, which was adjacent to a crosswalk, further east near Tower Records, 13450 Maxella Ave., based on the committee’s comments, said Ben Besley, director of development for The Olson Company.

Besley said the developer has discussed the plans to move the access location with Merisel Inc., which manages the adjacent Courtyard by Marriott hotel, and a decision is expected in early February.

“We feel it will definitely and positively impact the traffic situation,” Besley said.

“It’s a major relief for the traffic strain,” Redick said.

The land use committee is also concerned about the number of residential units proposed at the site because of impacts to traffic, and wants to reduce the number, Redick said. The height limitation of 70 feet has also concerned the committee.

“The committee will not approve a 310-unit complex,” Redick said.

The Del Rey Neighborhood Council has been in discussion with The Olson Company about possibly including a community meeting room in the redevelopment project plans, said Steve Knight, Neighborhood Council president.

Knight said a main issue for the council in the new year is to acquire a standard meeting place in the Del Rey area.

Neighborhood Council meetings are supposed to be held in the council districts, but the Del Rey council currently meets in the Marina del Rey Middle School library, 12500 Braddock Drive, he said.

“Del Rey doesn’t have a community meeting place,” Knight said.

“We want to try to include it in the Ocean Walk project to make sure we have a community meeting room for the council and other community groups.”

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