by Kevin Cody
Hermosa Beach housing laws, in 2023, were put through a blender of State mandated legislation, whose alphabet soup of acronyms, and ambitions rival those of the New Deal, where the term alphabet soup was introduced.
Whether chopped liver, or liver pate will be the result will depend on the public/private partnerships Hermosa’s city council is counting on to produce a new civic center, affordable housing (Hermosa currently has none), and new city revenue.
The council’s most ambitious 2023 plan is facilities study Option A, which calls for a new, $100 million City Hall, police station and library.
LVR (Land Value Recapture) is the most transformative 2023 council plan. If implemented, Pier Avenue, from Monterey Boulevard to Valley Drive, will be lined with previously prohibited residential development, as will swatches of Pacific Coast Highway and Aviation Boulevard.
LVR is driven by RHNA (Regional Housing Needs Allotment), a State mandate requiring Hermosa Beach to increase residential density by 558 new residences by 2029, reversing a half century of council efforts to reduce residential density.
The new residences must include 64 ADUs (Accessory Dwelling Units), of which 43 must be for moderate to very low income residents. (ADUs are residential units of not more than 850 sq. ft.)
Also in 2023, the council approved funding for a downtown BID (Business Improvement District). BIDs tax their members to fund district marketing and capital improvements.
During 2023’s second to last council meeting, on Wednesday, November 29, the council unanimously agreed to advance plans for a new, $100 million civic center on the Community Theater parking lot.
The new civic center would be financed, in part, by the sale, or lease of the current civic center site, voter approved bonds, and personnel savings resulting from more efficient city facilities. AI was