(February 12, 2004) -- LB City Hall has released a Draft Environmental Impact Report (DEIR) for Boeing Realty's ambitious PacifiCenter project at the SW corner of Lakewood Blvd. and Carson St...where Boeing seeks to redevelop roughly 261 acres of former and existing aircraft production facilities.
Under the California Environmental Quality Act (CEQA), the DEIR evaluates, and government authorities will take public input on, a preferred choice as well as other alternatives before making decisions on the project.
Boeing's preferred alternative is a mixed-use project that would provide 3.3 million square feet of commercial uses, office R & D and development, a hotel and up to [note: DEIRs indicate maximums] 2,500 homes comprised of a single family units, townhomes, condos and apartments (detailed in table below.)
Boeing's preferred alternative now includes roughly 10.5 acres of park land...quintupling the amount of park land originally proposed.
Boeing believes its preferred plan makes the best use of the site...and notes that it represents a substantial reduction from earlier plans for up to 3,800 homes and 7.3 million square feet of commercial use.
As legally required, the DEIR also evaluates other alternatives. One alternative provides for commercial development with up to 1,400 residential units and 11 acres of park land.
Another alternative, also not company preferred, notes the project's location near the Port and freeways and evaluates the property's use for 4 million sq. ft. of warehouse distribution [our translation: a container yard] plus 1 million sq. ft. for big box retail.
|Alternatives Compared||Preferred Plan||Reduced Intensity Alternative||All Commercial Alternative||*Original Proposal, no longer under consideration|
|Commercial||3.3 mil. sq. ft.||3.3 mil. sq. ft.||4.0 mil. sq. ft.||7.2 mil. sq. ft.|
|Retail||150,000 sq. ft.||200,000 sq. ft.||1.1 mil. sq. ft.||220,000 sq. ft.|
|Units per Acre||25||14||0||46|
|Housing Mix||Minimum of 60% for sale Maximum of 1,000 apartment units|| Minimum of 70% for sale Maximum of 400 apartment units||N/A||25 % for sale 75 % apartments|
|Parks and Open Space||10.5 acres||11 acres||0 acres||2 acres|
The project site is just north of LB airport...and a written release from the company's communications firm on the project notes that multiple regulatory agencies deal with land use regarding airports including the FAA, L.A. County Airport Land Use Commission, Caltrans, Department of Health Services and the City of Long Beach.
"PacifiCenterís plan responds to the guidance of each of these agencies by placing sensitive land uses in the least impacted areas of the site. In addition, owners will sign an acknowledgement covenant as well as an avigation easement relinquishing their right to bring a cause of action for airport noise," the release says.
As requested by 5th district Councilmember Jackie Kell, the public comment period will last for 60 days...more than legally required. During this period, the Planning Commissions and City Councils for LB and Lakewood will hold public workshops -- in addition to legally mandated public hearings -- to allow the public multiple opportunities to provide input on the project.
Boeing Realty indicates it will continue its outreach efforts and Task Force meetings throughout the public comment period.
The formal legal process which has now commenced was preceded by months of discussions involving Boeing Realty and city officialdom, along with public outreach that included community meetings and discussions by a Task Force during which initial plans were floated, dissected and modified.
In that sense, the DEIR is a collective work...and will now undergo further public comment before Councilmembers ultimately vote on the end product.
Reaction is pending as we post initially.
As previously reported by LBReport.com, an organized group of Lakewood Country Club area homeowners has opposed dense residential uses on the property. A Belmont Shore area homeowner has urged building an NFL football stadium on the site.
In a written statement accompanying the DEIR, City Hall notes that "[t]he purpose of the DEIR is to provide a detailed analysis of the projectís potential impacts on the environment, schools, traffic, the airport, water supplies, infrastructure and much more. The public, planning staff and city officials use this data to analyze the project, ask questions, suggest changes."
LB City Hall says written comments on the DEIR must be received by April 12, 2004. LB's Planning Commission will then hold several workshops discussing aspects of the project, which will also be open to the public.
Procedurally, two items will actually come before the non-elected, Council approved Planning Commission: certification (approval of) the DEIR and zoning changes needed to facilitate the project.
Planning Commissioners will hold a formal public hearing(s) on both, make changes as they see fit and vote on both.
The Planning Commission's certification of the DEIR can be appealed to the elected City Council...and the zoning changes will go to the elected City Council under any circumstances.
Then the elected City Council will receive further public input before taking a publicly recorded Council votes on the project.
LB City Hall has posted the DEIR on line.
Caveat: City Hall warns (accurately) that you need Adobe Acrobat Reader version 6.0 to view the DEIR and "older versions may not be able to properly read and display these documents." Fortunately, Acrobat Reader 6.0 is available free and City Hall provides a link on the DEIR hyperlink above
Boeing Realty also provides information about the project on its own specially dedicated web site: www.pacificenter.com.