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Santa Monica Nixes Mixed-Use Development in Favor of Suburban-Style Office Park

A hotly contested development in the coastal enclave of Santa Monica, CA—soon to be blessed with light rail access to the rest of the region—has produced less-than-ambitious results.
August 23, 2015, 9am PDT | James Brasuell | @CasualBrasuell
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"The Bergamot Transit Village saga is likely to end this week with a whimper as plans to turn the seven-acre site, once slated to become a mixed-use neighborhood across from the Expo Line 26th Street station, into a suburban-style office park continue to move forward," reports Jason Islas.

The Expo Line is the under-construction light rail line that will connect Downtown Los Angeles with Santa Monica—expected to open in 2016 and attract large ridership numbers.

The article provides more details about the development proposal considered by the city's Architecture Review Board last week. The ARB is only considering design elements, because the development is allowed by-right. The project adds 7,400 square feet of office space to bring the total on the site to 204,000 square feet.

The previous plan, known as the Bergamont Transit Village, sparked threats of a referendum. That was enough to inspire the city council to rescind its initial approval of the project. The Bergamont Project Village "would have created more than 400 apartments — including about 50 subsidized affordable units — and about 400,000 square feet of new offices directly across the street from the future Expo light rail station at 26th Street and Olympic Boulevard. The new community would have also had the city’s most aggressive traffic demand management (TDM) program," according to Islas.

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Published on Monday, August 17, 2015 in Santa Monica Next
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