Please note new meeting site
Mar Vista Community Council
Transportation and Infrastructure Committee
Tuesday, October 23, 2007 - 7:15-9:30 PM
St. John’s Presbyterian Church
11000 National Blvd.
(just east of Sepulveda Blvd.)
1) Call to Order (1 min)
2) Approval of minutes (1 min) (secretary - TBD)
3) Introductions and Public Comments (5 min)
4) Report on Recent MVCC Board Actions relating to T & I motions (10 min)
a) 8 17 07 Motion re: National at Sawtelle traffic mitigation
b) 10 9 07 Motion regarding Shell Pipeline construction
5) T & I Sub-committee Reports (20 mins)
LA DOT Bi-Monthly Meeting - Linda Guagliano
SMC Airport(Bundy) Campus Committee Report - Bob Fitzpatrick
Traffic Action Group/Speed Trailer - Bill Pope
Santa Monica Airport - Albert Olson
6) Old Business (10 min)
a) Potential motions re: Traffic Mitigation Policy Reforms, and Traffic Mitigation Policy Reforms Implementation ---Bill Pope (see attached Items 1 & 2)
b) MVCC Position on Carpool Lane Entry and Exit (tabled at last meeting for further work and research)
7) New Business (45 min)
a) Discussion of parking/traffic issues related to proposed studio at corner of National and Barrington --- Jay Co
b) Potential motion re: Opposing LACC Attempts to Move Residents Out of Cars and Into Mass Transit By Parking Reduction Proposals“ -- Albert Olson (see attached Item 3)
c) Potential motion re: Opposing Parking Exemptions to Transit-Adjacent Developments--Ken Alpern (see attached Item 4)
d) Discussion of Do Not Enter sign recently placed on Lawler at intersection of Lawler and Grandview, and discussion, with possible motion, of reaffirming that only the MVCC Board can make recommendations and give approvals to any city agency.
The MVCC would like to re-affirm that all requests from LADOT or CD11 for MVCC input on any transportation related matter must be presented to the MVCC Transportation and Infrastructure Committee for consideration. Any judgement of the committee must then be approved by the Board before being transmitted to LADOT or CD11. The MVCC Board of Directors has given no authorization to any individual to make decisions on such matters or speak on the Board’s behalf.
e) 12402 Washington Place – 42,000 SF Office building – Traffic Impacts. Safety issues –Bill Pope
8) Public Comment (10 mins)
9) New Agenda Items
10) Adjournment (9:30 PM)
To learn more visit marvistacc.com
The audience is requested to fill out a "Speaker Card" to address the Committee on any item of the Agenda prior to the Committee taking action on an item.
Comments from the public on Agenda items will be heard only when the respective item is being considered. Comments from the public on other matters not appearing on the Agenda that are within the Committee's subject matter jurisdiction will be heard during the public comment period. Public comment is limited to two minutes per speaker, unless waived by the presiding officer of the Committee. Mar Vista Community Council Transportation Committee meetings will follow Robert's Rules of Order Newly Revised. For more information, please visit the MVCC web site at www.marvistacc.com.
Traffic Mitigation Policy Reforms Motion
Whereas, the official Transportation Goals, Policies and Programs of the City of Los Angeles are documented, pursuant to California State Code 65300, in the General Plan of the City of Los Angeles and its area-specific Community Plans.
And Whereas the above Plans contain the following Transportation Policies:
“Maintain a satisfactory LOS [Level of Service] for streets and highways that should not exceed LOS “D” for secondary highways and collector streets; nor LOS “E” for major highways or major business districts.” (1) , and
“No increase in density shall be effected by zone change, Plan amendment, subdivision, or other discretionary action unless it is determined that the transportation infrastructure serving the property can accommodate the traffic generated.” (2) ,
And Whereas two-thirds of LA Westside intersections are projected by 2010 to be operating below the Level of Service (LOS) defined as Satisfactory by Westside Community Plans, with one-thirds at LOS “F” (Failure), presenting the potential for a true grid-lock incident, as a results of just the land development projects approved through 2004,
And Whereas the above conditions are caused in great part by the Los Angeles Department of Transportation (LADOT) Traffic Study Policies and Practices related to land development and density-increasing re-development projects (projects),
And Whereas the above policies and practices do not effectively support the official Transportation Goals, Policies and Programs stated in the City’s General and Community Plans, because they:
1) Consider only the traffic increases projected to occur during the one Peak Traffic Hour of the day, which in LA today accounts for only one-quarter to one-third of project-generated trips,
2) Under-estimate even the Peak Traffic Hour increases because trip generation estimates for LA projects are based on observations of trips generated by projects completed:
- in cities with better mass transit options than are available to LA commuters,
- where two incomes, and therefore the likelihood of two commuters, are not required to purchase a new home,
- as far back as the 1970’s when two career families was not the norm,
3) Do not requiring traffic study or mitigation from project which generate 42 or fewer Peak Hour Trips which can easily be achieved by project “phasing” or “piecemealing”, and which for example, at the current Trip Generation Rate of 0.5 Peak Hour Trips Per Condo, can allow to go unstudied and unmitigated an 84-condo development project which can add 168 unmitigated trips during both the AM and PM Commute Periods, adding from 1% to 3% additional unmitigated demand to the street serving the project, depending on its number of lanes, during the Peak Traffic Hour.
4) Do not requiring full mitigation of even Peak Traffic Hour increases, allowing up to 1% increases per project at intersections already operating at an Unsatisfactory LOS and even at LOS “F” intersections, where demand already exceeds the intersection’s physical design capacity, in spite of Community Plan policies against such increases,
5) Allow exemptions from financial-contribution type mitigations, such as the exemptions from Traffic Impact Assessment (TIA) Fees allowed residential development projects by the Coastal Transportation Corridor Specific Plan and the West Los Angeles Transportation Improvement and Mitigation Specific Plan,
6) Set TIA fees, when charged, at levels grossly insufficient to mitigate the impacts which trigger such fees.
7) Allow unmitigatable projects to be approved based on a declaration that “Overriding Considerations” justify such.
And Whereas the unmitigated traffic increases resulting from the above practices forces expansion of Commute Period hours, thereby reducing the number of trips observed during the Peak Traffic Hour from recently completed projects, and thereby reduces the number of Peak Hour trips projected for future projects,
And Whereas the new traffic study and mitigation procedures being developed by LADOT appear to still not support the official Transportation policies stated in the LA General Plan and Community Plans, and still focus only on Peak Hour trips and therefore will not mitigate the majority of new trips generated because current Peak Hour congestion forces most new trips to occur outside of the Peak Hour,
And Whereas, decreasing petroleum supplies, increasing air pollution, inability to further expand roadway space for additional private vehicles, and global warming demand a switch from private vehicle travel to mass transit travel,
And Whereas LA’s original land developers provided the transportation infrastructure required by their projects' inhabitants by building LA’s original streets, passing that cost on to their projects’ buyers, and therefore today’s land development and density-increasing land re-development projects should do likewise either by providing the roadway, intersection, and/or mass transit system improvement necessary to fully accommodate their projects’ inhabitants,
Therefore, the CD11 Transportation Advisory Committee, after careful analysis and thoughtful observation, requests Los Angeles City Councilman Bill Rosendahl to consider the concepts listed below for incorporation into the City’s Traffic Study and Mitigation Policies and Procedures. We will be happy to present and discuss our recommended concepts with the Los Angeles City Council, the Los Angeles City Council Transportation Committee and/or Los Angeles Department of Transportation management.
1. Base traffic/trip mitigation requirements for all land development and density-increasing land redevelopment projects (projects) on Net Commute Period Trips to be added by the proposed project, not just the Peak Traffic Hour portion. (Net Commute Period Trips consist of trips occurring during the AM and PM peak Commute Periods which currently run from 6:00 to 10:00 AM, and from 3:00 to 7:00 PM respectively, less current period trips to/from the project’s property.)
2. Dispense with all escapes from traffic impact mitigations, such as those based on such determinations as an insignificant number of net trips generated, non-Peak Traffic Hour versus Peak Traffic Hour net trip increases, Less-Than-Significant versus Significant trip impacts, Residential versus Non-Residential projects, Mixed-use versus non mixed-use, proximity to transit stops or stations, high versus low density, etc. (with possible exceptions for low-income housing), as all new and density-increasing development increases transportation infrastructure demand which must be accommodated.
3. Establish, as a per-trip mitigation measure, the mechanism whereby a development project may pay a Transit Accommodation (TA) Fee (3) sufficient to expand an existing or committed transit line or lines to accommodate either a project-generated trip or remove a competing trip from the street(s) used by the proposed project, and the expansion is accomplished as soon after as incoming fees and/or other funds allow acquisition of an additional bus or rail car.
The Fee should cover the prorated capital cost of the additional transit seat and shelter, or portion thereof, required on a transit line that will exist by the time of project occupancy, and the operational cost of that seat over the average commute distance traveled by LA County commuters for at least the first year of operation, or a time period determined by the operating agency as sufficient to acquire and sustain ridership.
Although the TA Fee can be used to build or expand either local transit lines serving the project or that portion of a regional MTA-system that will relieve traffic congestion nearest the project paying the fee, we recommend that the fee be collected by LA County and forwarded to either MTA or the city(s) responsible for the transit line to be expanded.
4. Adhere to Los Angeles General Plan-Community Plan transportation policy (1), which requires the City to,
“Maintain a satisfactory LOS [Level of Service] for streets and highways that should not exceed LOS “D” for secondary highways and collector streets; nor LOS “E” for major highways or major business districts.”,
by requiring any Net Commute Period Trips that cannot be accommodated in private vehicles, after project-proposed roadway/intersection improvements, at the above-stated satisfactory LOS at all Los Angeles, neighboring city, or LA County intersections expected to be used by those trips, to be mitigated by paying the Transit Accommodation Fee defined in 3 above. The intersections in question shall be determined by a Gravity Flow Model which allocates such trips outside of the project neighborhood only to Major and Secondary Highways (4) .
5. Adhere to Los Angeles General Plan-Community Plan transportation policy (2), which specifies that,
“No increase in density shall be effected by zone change, Plan amendment, subdivision, or other discretionary action unless it is determined that the transportation infrastructure serving the property can accommodate the traffic generated.”,
by requiring roadway/intersection improvements and/or the payment of TA Fees to expand mass transit for project and/or non-project trips, to improve to Satisfactory LOS (see 4. above) any unsatisfactory Los Angeles, neighboring city, or LA County intersection nearer the proposed project in any direction than a transit stop on a line serving that direction of travel which is guaranteed by the operating authority to have capacity at project build-out for the trips allocated to mass transit to support the policies specified in mitigation requirement 4. and 5. ( 5.)
6. Disallow land development and density-increasing redevelopment projects if the policies and criteria specified in 4. and 5. above can not be met.
7. Issue Occupancy Permits only after required mitigations are completed and operating.(7)
1 Policy 16-1.1 in the Palms, Mar Vista, del Rey, Venice, and West Los Angeles General Plans.
Policy 15-1.1 in the Westwood Community Plan
Policy 13-1.1 in the Brentwood, Pacific Palisades Community Plans
Also in the Westchester Community Plan before is was removed in 2004 to aid Playa Capital.
2 Policy 16-2.1 in the Palms, Mar Vista, del Rey, Venice, and West Los Angeles General Plans.
Policy 15-2.1 in the Westwood Community Plan
Policy 13-2.1 in the Brentwood, Pacific Palisades Community Plans
Also in the Westchester Community Plan before is was removed in 2004 to aid Playa Capital.
3 We believe the above meets both the spirit and letter of State Code 66000 nexus rules. We also believe a fee based on the average per-seat-per-mile costs of existing, and/or planned, transit systems and an average commute distance is a simpler, more reliable method of determining mitigation requirements than one based on predictions of a particular project’s contribution to the predicted future operating Level of Service of each intersection predicted to be used by project commuters.
The TA Fee could be used by any development project to mitigate all or any portion of their project’s trip increases, as required to meet the requirements specified in 4. and 5. below. A small development project will probably choose to pay the TA Fee rather than conduct lengthy, expensive studies to determine the roadway/intersection improvements required to mitigate increased trips by private vehicle.
A convenient, time-and-cost effective transit system is required to ease congestion and accommodate future City growth. TA Fees can provide the required funding. Transit authorities must then provide the require system in a timely manner.
4 Restricting traffic models to use only Major and Secondary Highways will prevent “planning in” additional cut-through” traffic as was done when Playa Vista used residential Collector streets as planned routes for absorbing project and competing traffic.
5 The Policy supported by mitigation requirement 4. states that a Satisfactory LOS should be maintained. Requirement 4. allows development even when such conditions no not exist, but requires the project to accommodate its additional trips at any unsatisfactory intersections by funding mass transit expansion(s) to accommodate those trips.
The Policy enforced by mitigation requirement 5. requires that the transportation infrastructure “serving” [required to access] the project’s property accommodate the traffic [trips] generated. Transportation infrastructure consists of roadways and intersections, and/or mass transit systems. One of these for each possible direction of project access must operate at a Satisfactory LOS. To achieve this, a project may need to pay the TA Fee to expand transit system(s) to accommodate, and therefore reduce, non-project trips at any unsatisfactory LOS intersection(s) adjacent to the project’s block. Over time, this requirement should bring unsatisfactory intersections across the City into compliance with the Satisfactory LOS policy.
7 Although the Traffic Mitigation Policy Reforms motion does not go into the mechanics of how the City or County would use the Transit Accommodation (TA) Fees to fund the expansion of transit systems, the following is at least one way the fees could be used to provide the necessary additional transit capacity by the time a development project paying such fees would be ready for occupancy. (For simplicity, we will assume that one additional transit seat is required to mitigate each additional trip added by a development project.)
1. LA County and cities initially arrange some method of acquiring funds for up to one new “transit unit” (bus or rail car) per line they operate and expect to incur development in the near future. LA City could, for instance, use the $50 Million currently sitting unused in LADOT's Traffic Mitigation escrow account as a ”Slush Fund”. Or cities or MTA could arrange for a line of credit or prepare to sell a couple to bonds.
2. As development projects are approved and TA Fees paid through the County to the appropriate agency, County MTA or a city DOT uses the TA Fee and, if necessary, money from its slush fund, bond account or line of credit to purchase enough transit units to accommodate the trips being so mitigated.
Below is an example.
A 10 condo project expected to generate 20 trips is approved on Bus Line 1. The developer pays for 20 seats and probably one 5-seat shelter. The City uses the TA Fee and the pre-allocated or pre-arranged funds to add a 40-passenger bus and shelter to the line. The bus mitigates the project's 20 trips and has additional capacity to mitigate 20 additional future trips.
The next development project approved on that line is also for 10 condos estimated to generate 20 trips during the Commute Period. The project pays the TA Fee for 20 seats plus appropriate shelter seats.
The transit seats required by this project are already online (in "reserve"), therefore no additional bus needs to be purchased. The city or MTA uses the TA Fee to reimburse the slush fund or pay off the loan or bonds.
The third project on this line is for 84 condos, generating 168 trips. (Under existing LA City policy, this project would be estimated to generate only 42 trips and therefore would not even be studied, much less mitigated.) Under the above reforms, the project would pay TA Fees from 168 seats plus the appropriate number of shelter seats.
The city/MTA adds three new 56-passenger buses to the line, totally covered by the project's TA Fees and does not have to borrow from its slush fund or make a new loan or sell bonds at this time.
It matters not if the seats are used by the development project's new residents, or clients. Just adding the seats makes it possible for either project or non-project private-vehicle trips to be accommodated on transit and therefore remove them from the roads. Mitigation is accomplished.
Traffic Mitigation Policy Reforms Implementation Motion
Whereas traffic congestion since 1990 has increased four times more on the Westside of Los Angeles than in Los Angeles as a whole,
And Whereas, Westside traffic congestion may be caused by inadequate traffic mitigation policies used by cities such as the City of Santa Monica, the City of Beverly Hills, the City of Culver City, the City of El Segundo, etc., as well as the inadequate traffic mitigation policies used by the City of Los Angeles,
And Whereas, after 15 years of work, the Metropolitan Transportation Authority (MTA) has failed to meet its 1991 State mandate to develop a countywide program to mitigate the regional traffic impacts of growth,
And Whereas, after 4 years of work, the MTA Congestion Mitigation Fee Nexus Study that began in 2003 has failed to levy a countywide fee on development projects that could be used to build the integrated local-regional transit system required to alleviate today’s traffic congestion and support tomorrow’s population growth.
The CD11 Transportation Advisory Committee therefore requests that City Councilman Bill Rosendahl seek implementation of the traffic mitigation policy reforms specified in the above Traffic Mitigation Policy Reforms Motion by doing the following:
1) Call for an immediately change to the Coastal Transportation Corridor Specific Plan, the jurisdiction of which lies solely within Los Angeles Council District 11, to include the above stated reforms,
2) Negotiate a change of the West Los Angeles Traffic Improvement and Mitigation Specific Plan, the jurisdiction of which spans City Council Districts 5 and 11, to include the above stated reforms, and
3) Recommend that the Los Angeles City Council Transportation Committee, of which he is a member, recommend that the above stated reforms be included in the Metropolitan Transportation Authority’s Congestion Mitigation Program so that the reforms will be implemented across all Los Angeles County cities, and that the above recommended Commuter Accommodate Fee be used as the countywide MTA Congestion Mitigation Fee as it provides the State-required nexus between cost of mitigating each additional trip generated by a development project and the fees charged that particular development project.
Motion re: Opposing LACC Attempts to Move Residents Out of Cars and Into Mass Transit By Parking Reduction Proposals
1) Whereas the Mar Vista Community Council (MVCC) is concerned about a movement in Los Angeles city planning committees to force people out of their cars and into mass transit by taking away parking requirements in new residential and commercial development projects, and
2) Whereas the City of Los Angeles does not currently have an adequate system for mass transit, and
3) Whereas the residents of Los Angeles have never made a choice to replace their individual use of the automobile with mass transit systems,
The Mar Vista Community Council Board therefore:
1) Opposes the Amendment to Section 12.24 x 17 of the municipal code, also known as the “Parking Reduction Amendment”
2) Opposes any city exemptions to developers and property owners from established legal requirements to create and provide sufficient parking in new residential and commercial development projects
3) Will monitor and work to defeat any of the above exemptions proposed for developers in areas that impact MVCC stakeholders
4) Encourage a public debate over the question of establishing a city policy that would reduce present city parking requirements in order to force residents to accept future mass transit solutions.
Whereas, the City of Los Angeles does not at this time have an established mass transit network of bus/rail connections capable of eliminating the need for automobile usage, and
Whereas, private automobiles are often needed for emergency purposes, groceries and other errands, tourists, and for commuters who must travel long distances to access transit corridors, and for transit-adjacent residents to travel long distances within or outside the City, and
Whereas, many and perhaps most transit users will require at least limited access to automobiles to meet their transportation needs, particularly those who care for and travel with children, disabled individuals and/or seniors, and
Whereas there is a shortage of parking near transit stations and on major commercial corridors which both reduces potential ridership and prevents the elimination of streetside parking that could be used instead for bus, bicycle and pedestrian commuters,
The Mar Vista Community Council Board therefore:
1) Opposes any City exemptions to developers and property owners from established legal requirements to create and provide sufficient parking adjacent to surface arterials, transit corridors and transit stations
2) Supports mandatory regulations that hold developers accountable to fund and construct of facilities to enhance pedestrian, bicycle and bus access to transit stops
3) Supports the creation of parking facilities, either mixed-use or devoted solely to parking, that reduces or eliminates streetside parking and thereby creates more potential space for buses, bicycle lanes and/or widened sidewalks to facilitate pedestrian-friendly transit stations and commercial corridors