The City Council and westside Councilman Mike Bonin approved by a vote of 12-0 a mega-City at Bundy and Olympic called Martin Expo Town Center. Forget that the intersection is already a choke point for traffic, and forget that this development will add 7,000 car trips PER DAY to the area — our City government and agencies are pushing it through fast and furious. The developer made some very minor concessions, including a paltry donation to homelessness, $200,000, for a project that will cost well north of $250 million. In addition, the Martin family, heirs to the Martin Cadillac legacy, will add some “affordable housing units,” which realistically are a small give for a mega-project that includes
- Over 500 residential units
- Near 100,000 square feet of retail
- 200,000 square feet of office space
- Ten story building heights
Some residential groups wanted them to eliminate the full scale supermarket, since this draws outside traffic, in exchange for a smaller one that just serves the development, but the Martin family said no, even though there are two full-size Ralphs markets and a Trader Joes within walking distance.
Somehow, Councilman Bonin can’t see what the entire City of Santa Monica saw when they sent the Hines Company packing with their proposal for Bergamont Transit Village. That huge development, also near an Expo Line transit stop, was seen as too big and creating too much traffic for the adjacent streets and intersections to bear.
The approval of this project is courtesy of the same people who thought a ground-level train, which blocks traffic paths while it shepherds commuters was a more reasonable alternative than an elevated system which could have all the benefits and none of the drawbacks.
Welcome to LA! Now stay home.