A proposed redevelopment of a portion of the Villa Marina Marketplace adjacent to Lincoln Boulevard in the Marina area calls for construction of 310 residential units and 9,000 square feet of retail space.

The Olson Company presented its plans for the redevelopment project at the Del Rey Neighborhood Council Planning and Land Use Committee meeting Thursday, September 16th.

The project proposes building 310 for-sale condominiums and adding 9,000 square feet of retail space at the site, located at 13480 and 13490 Maxella Ave., and 4350, 4356 and 4358 Lincoln Blvd., in the Marina area.

Ben Besley, project manager for the Seal Beach-based Olson Company, said the company expects to begin construction by early 2006.

The project will cover about 3.87 acres and will redevelop the portion of the shopping center where Carl’s Jr., Kinko’s and Marie Callender’s Restaurant are currently located.

Although it is presently unknown which businesses will be affected, the Kinko facility will likely stay, Besley said.

The retail space would be located along Maxella Avenue, he said.

“We think there’s a great opportunity for a mixed-use community,” Besley said.

The plans have been in the works for about a year and a half, and are still at the initial stages, he said.

The Villa Marina Marketplace was previously owned by Macerich Company, Santa Monica, which sold the property in October 2001.

The shopping center is currently owned by M&H Property Management, Marina del Rey.

Sandra Dellibovi, manager for M&H, was unable to comment on the redevelopment project.

A complete environmental impact report (EIR) on the site is currently being prepared, along with a traffic study, but developers say the EIR will take several more months to complete.

“We want to try to have a project that we can be proud of and that you’re going to be happy with,” Besley told the Del Rey Neighborhood Council members.

The project will also have an affordable housing component with ten percent of the units being restricted to low-income residents, he said.

The maximum height of the proposed development would be 70 feet.

At the meeting, Del Rey residents expressed concern regarding the height of the project

“The height of 70 feet is an absolute objection,” said neighborhood councilmember Frank Underwood, a Villa Marina resident.

Underwood is also concerned about plans to close ingress and egress to the site from Lincoln Boulevard, shifting all of the project traffic to Maxella Avenue.

Other project concerns by residents include increased traffic at an already heavily traveled area, an overflow of retail space, and too many residential units per acre.

“We hope that over time we can bring a project that you can support and will make the community better,” Besley said.

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