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West L.A. Expo Stations Getting Mixed-Use Makeovers

Public meeting April 10 will kick off environmental review of L.A.'s plan to rezone areas surrounding five light rail stations from Culver City to Santa Monica.

The city of Los Angeles is gearing up to study how new pedestrian-friendly, mixed-use development along the Expo Light Rail corridor will impact traffic and surrounding neighborhoods.

It's starting an environmental impact report on its plan to rezone areas within a 15 minute walk of the five Expo stations from Culver City to Santa Monica. The stations are in Culver City, which is already open, and at National and Palms, Exposition and Westwood, Exposition and Sepulveda and Exposition and Bundy.

The goal, according to city planners, is to encourage people to actually take the train by allowing "some increased development intensity near stations" and "improving the configuration and condition of streets to better promote pedestrian, bicycle, and vehicular circulation." Other changes will likely include adding public green space and affordable housing.

SEE ALSO: Mayor Wants to Lure Tech Start-ups to Expo Corridor

The plan does not include the three stations under construction in Santa Monica, which is already moving forward on re-zoning a large swath of land near the future Expo stop at the Bergamot Station Arts Center.

Work to extend Expo Light Rail from the line's current terminus in Culver City to downtown Santa Monica is chugging along and remains on track for a 2015 completion date. Pending successful inspections and testing, the train will open to riders in 2016. About 64,000 riders are estimated to take the train from its starting point in downtown Los Angeles to Santa Monica by 2030.

A public meeting to kick off the environmental review of the five stations between Culver City and Santa Monica is at 6 p.m. April 10 in at the IMAN Cultural Center in Palms. Feedback will be taken following a presentation on the project at 6:15 p.m.

The cultural center is at 3376 Motor Ave.

Can't make the meeting but have something to say? Send comments to Lameese Elqura by April 15. They can also be mailed to Elqura at the Department of City Planning, 200 N. Spring St., Room 667, Los Angeles, CA 90012.

Marilyn Noyes March 22, 2013 at 12:56 AM
Don't those detached, authoritarian wonks in Planning (or should I say "Planning"?) have a clue that WLA and Brentwood and Mar Vista and Westwood and other nearby communities are really part of one generalized neighborhood and that by inflicting this "smart growth" they will cut us off from each other and make the livability within our areas monumentally worse??? They're going to IMPORT more people into the Westside but there will still be nothing to facilitate movement within and around our neighborhoods for the EXISTING residents...the people who ARE the communities! What the hell happened to the WLA Community plan we spent so much time on? Is all of this superseding that plan which was put in dry dock three or four years ago because of budget shortfalls? How is that the least bit legitimate??? They are throwing us under the bus! Or more aptly, under the train.
Dennis Lytton March 22, 2013 at 02:26 AM
I've become a libertarian when it comes to land-use planning. For the most part, if somebody owns the land they should be allowed to build whatever they want on it.

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