A judge has dealt a major blow to Los Angeles’ efforts to spur larger development in parts of Hollywood, calling a new zoning plan for the area “fatally flawed” and saying that the document should be repealed.
In a tentative 41-page ruling issued Tuesday, Los Angeles County Superior Court Judge Allan J. Goodman said city leaders failed to comply with the state’s environmental law when it approved an update to the Hollywood Community Plan, which mapped out new limits for development in that neighborhood.
The plan sought to allow construction of larger buildings in some parts of Hollywood, particularly around transit stops. Three civic groups sued the city over the plan last summer, saying that the council and city planners had relied on inaccurate data and failed to properly consider alternatives to the plan.
“It’s a clear-cut victory for all three plaintiffs and the community,” said Frank Angel, one of the attorneys for Save Hollywood.org, one of the three groups.
Derived from the Judge’s ruling:
For the reasons stated, petitioners are entitled to relief as follows:
(1) to a peremptory writ of mandate ordering respondents and defendants City and City Council to (a) rescind, vacate and set aside all actions approving the HCPU and certifying the EIR adopted in connection therewith and all related approvals issued in furtherance of the HCPU, including but not limited to the text and maps associated with the HCPU, the Resolution amending the Hollywood Community Plan, the adoption of rezoning actions taken to reflect zoning changes contained in the HCPU, all amendments to the General Plan Transportation and Framework Elements made to reflect changes in the HCPU, adopting the Statement of Overriding Considerations, adopting the Mitigation and Monitoring Program, and adopting Findings in support of the foregoing; and (b) initiate the process of amending the HCP in a manner that conforms to the policies and objectives of the General Plan and the requirements of CEQA;
(2) an injunction that respondents and defendants City and City Council, their officers, employees, agents, boards, commissions and other subdivisions shall not grant any authority, permits or entitlements which derive from the HCPU or its EIR until an adequate and valid EIR is prepared, circulated and certified as complete and is consistent with CEQA, CEQA Guidelines, and all other applicable laws, and until legally adequate findings of consistence are made as required pursuant to the Charter of the 27.
The relief set out below is the full relief to be awarded in the three cases. Any argument made and not addresses is deemed rejected.
City of Los Angeles and other applicable laws;
(3) attorneys fees and costs as may hereafter be determined.
DATED: December 10, 2013
ALLAN J. GOODMAN JUDGE OF THE SUPERIOR COURT