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Development Approval Process Hits a New Low in Los Angeles

As a particularly sad example of the morass of confusion and litigation that defines the development and planning process in California cities, renters have been ordered to vacate a newly constructed residential building in Hollywood.
March 23, 2015, 11am PDT | James Brasuell | @CasualBrasuell
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Los Angeles building officials on Thursday ordered a real estate developer to remove tenants from a 22-story apartment building in Hollywood, the latest piece of bad news to befall the recently opened project amid a long-running court battle," reports David Zahniser.

"The city's action comes five months after a judge invalidated construction permits for the 299-unit project, saying that city officials improperly allowed the developer to demolish a 1924 building on the site. Superior Court Judge James C. Chalfant said in his ruling that CIM Group had proceeded with construction during a legal challenge at 'its own peril.'"

The neighborhood association and lawyer behind the lawsuit that has forced the tenants from the building are two of the most notorious NIMBY activists who use CEQA to delay and prevent development in Los Angeles. CIM Group could appeal the ruling to the city's Board of Building and Safety Commissioners to postpone the April 19 deadline for tenants to vacate. Failing that option, the project would need a new environmental review and approval process to be granted the necessary occupancy permit.

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Published on Thursday, March 19, 2015 in Los Angeles Times
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