Miracle Mile HPOZ Update ~ July 2015

HPOZ UPDATE ~ July 2015:
Historic Resources Survey
Fieldwork Completed

 

[Click on image to view video of survey team at work]

Katie Horak, Senior Associate with Architectural Resources Group [ARG], reports that the fieldwork part of the Historic Resources Survey has been completed. The survey documented every property within the boundaries of the Miracle Mile HPOZ [see map].

Horak explained to the Miracle Mile HPOZ Committee that ARG is now “cleaning up the data” and writing the Survey Report. A draft of the report will be submitted to the Committee for review by the end of July.

ARG is in the process of preparing individual DPR forms for each property and hopes to have the draft DPRs ready for the Committee’s inspection by mid-August.

“DPR” is an acronym for the California Department of Parks and Recreation. A DPR form is a standardized state form for documenting historic resources. It includes basic information – address and a property description – and a photograph of every property within a historic district.

Horak said that ARG is on track to submit the final report to the Los Angeles City Office of Historic Resources by September.

The Miracle Mile HPOZ Committee has been holding a series of “block meetings” to educate residents about the process and benefits of HPOZ. The Committee’s goal is to visit every block within the HPOZ boundaries. The Committee is also planning a community-wide meeting in the Fall.

If you would like to host an informal meeting for your neighbors to discuss HPOZ please contact Mark Zecca, Chair of the Miracle Mile HPOZ Committee: mark.zecca@MiracleMileLA.com.

For more information visit:

Miracle Mile HPOZ Website

Miracle Mile HPOZ Update ~ June 2015

Miracle Mile HPOZ Update

June 2015:

New Videos of Historical Survey Team at Work
+ HPOZ Progress Report from Katie Horak

 

Click on image to view video.

An Historic Resources Survey is the foundation of an Historic Preservation Overlay Zone, it documents the history of every property within the boundaries of an HPOZ. The Miracle Mile Residential Association engaged the services of Architectural Resources Group [ARG] to perform the survey of the Miracle Mile HPOZ [see map].

Watch the video above to see the ARG survey team at work in the Miracle Mile. You will also learn what “contributing” and “non-contributing” properties are and how they are evaluated.

Click on image to view video.

For a progress report on the Miracle Mile HPOZ watch the interview [above] with Katie Horak, Senior Associate, Architectural Resources Group. Research of original building permits reveals that several renown architects designed homes in the Miracle Mile.

HPOZ Info Packet Mailed to Miracle Mile Property Owners

Earlier this month, the HPOZ Committee – as part of its ongoing outreach campaign – sent out a mailing to nearly 1600 property owners within the boundaries of the Miracle Mile Historic Preservation Overlay Zone. A letter from HPOZ Chairperson Mark Zecca was accompanied by an informative HPOZ pamphlet published by the City Department of Planning.

If you are a renter and would like to receive a copy of the letter and HPOZ pamphlet, email your name and address to: HPOZ@MiracleMileLA.com.

Host an HPOZ Informational Meeting
on Your Block

Sierra Bonita resident Esther Diaz hands a $250 check to MMRA
Treasurer Joe Steins. Diaz’s personal donation – the first we have
received – will help the MMRA with the substantial costs of
establishing the Miracle Mile HPOZ. (Photo by Cari Lutz.)

On Saturday, June 6, an informal gathering of residents on South Sierra Bonita Avenue [see story below] had an opportunity to learn about HPOZ and have their questions answered by HPOZ Chairperson Mark Zecca and MMRA Treasurer Joseph Steins. If you and your neighbors would like to host a get-together to learn more about HPOZ please contact us and members of the HPOZ Committee will be happy to attend. You can email us at:

HPOZ@MiracleMileLA.com

For additional information on the Miracle Mile HPOZ visit:

MiracleMileLA.com/HPOZ

HPOZ Update: Historic Resources Survey Underway

Boundaries of the Miracle Mile HPOZ. Click on map to enlarge.

 HPOZ UPDATE:

Historic Resources Survey Underway

 MMRA VP Ken Hixon Speaks on the Miracle Mile HPOZ
at Chamber Commerce Economic Forum

The Historic Resources Survey of the 1600-plus parcels contained within the Miracle Mile Historic Preservation Overlay Zone (HPOZ) began two weeks ago. The Miracle Mile Residential Association (MMRA) engaged the services of Architectural Resources Group (ARG) to perform the survey, which is a prerequisite for applying for HPOZ status.

Katie Horak, ARG executive in charge of the survey, reports that there are two teams doing the fieldwork and that each team is averaging about 30 properties per day. It is estimated that it will take approximately four more weeks to complete the survey.

The Miracle Mile HPOZ Committee is preparing a mass mailing to property owners explaining the many benefits of HPOZ. “Outreach is key to the success of the HPOZ,” says committee member Jeremy Matz. “We are planning a door-to-door campaign, house parties, and other meetings to capitalize on the groundswell of support that the community displayed at our January meeting and on our online survey.”

HPOZ Committee Chairperson and local realtor Mark Zecca says, “Many homeowners aren’t aware of how HPOZ enhances the value of their property. Buyers are attracted to stable and well-protected areas. It’s important that we spread this message.”

MMRA Vice President Ken Hixon was a speaker at the Miracle Mile Chamber of Commerce Economic Forum on May 13. The Chamber endorsed the creation of the Miracle Mile HPOZ and Hixon was invited to address the topic at the assembly of business and civic leaders.

Hixon’s speech explained how an HPOZ would stop McMansions and the wholesale eradication of rent-stabilized rental units. He also spoke on how the history of our neighborhood is a tangible part of its appeal. “The history of this place is what provides us with our sense of place.” Hixon said. “This sense of place is what makes the Miracle Mile such a great community to live and do business in.”

For additional information:

Miracle Mile Residential Association website: HPOZ Information

Miracle Mile Chamber of Commerce Economic Forum, 13 May 2015: Miracle Mile HPOZ speech by Ken Hixon

Office of Historic Resources: Historic Preservation Overlay Zones

Miracle Mile Demolition Ban Approved

Miracle Mile
Demolition Ban Approved
 

City Enacts Two-Year Interim Control Ordinance
to Stop McMansions

 Click map to enlarge.

On March 25, 2015, the Los Angeles City Council approved two Interim Control Ordinances [ICOs]: one ordinance prohibited demolitions and substantial alterations of single family homes in five proposed Historic Preservation Overlay Zones [HPOZ], and the second ordinance limits the scale of new home construction in 15 additional neighborhoods, including the Miracle Mile. Both ordinances took effect immediately upon adoption.

The ICOs were enacted for an initial 45-day period, during which they may be renewed in six-month periods for up to two years. Given that they were “urgency” measures adopted (by a vote of 15–0) as a result of intense political pressure from neighborhoods under attack throughout the City, it is highly unlikely that the City Council will not routinely extend the ICOs for a full two-year period – but the MMRA and other ICO communities will be vigilant.

The ordinances are intended to provide immediate relief from demolitions in areas experiencing the deleterious impacts of new “super-sized” homes – providing time for the Department of City Planning to execute a much needed reform of the Baseline Mansionization Ordinance [BMO], which has been wholly ineffective in stopping the spread of McMansions.

The ICO prohibits the issuing of any building permit in the Miracle Mile unless the proposed structure complies with the regulations set forth in the Beverly Grove Residential Floor Area District, which was adopted by the City Council in October 2013 to stop the unchecked spread of McMansions in that community.

The Miracle Mile Residential Association requested identical regulations when it applied for a Residential Floor Area District [RFA] for R-1 zoned properties within its boundaries in September 2014.

The Miracle Mile’s pending RFA application qualified its inclusion in the ICO. The MMRA is pursuing RFA status as stopgap measure to protect our community while we are engaged in the more time consuming process of creating the Miracle Mile HPOZ. Unlike RFAs, which only apply to single-family homes and have no design guidelines, an HPOZ would provide more exacting and durable protection for both historic homes and multi-unit apartment buildings.


The La Brea-Hancock area also received similiar ICO protection as the Miracle Mile. The graphic below depicts how their community has been overwhelmed by McMansions:


Click on image to enlarge. Courtesy of La Brea Hancock HOA.

For additional information:

MMRA website: HPOZ and RFA information

City of Los Angeles: Interim Control Ordinance (ICO) for 15 Neighborhood Conservation Areas

Los Angeles Times Editorial: Interim McMansion Law is a Fit Addition for Some Areas

Historic Resources Survey of Miracle Mile Properties Launched

HPOZ UPDATE:

Historic Resources Survey of
Miracle Mile Properties Launched

A historic resources survey of Miracle Mile properties commenced this week, a prerequisite for the creation of the Miracle Mile Historic Preservation Overlay Zone [HPOZ]. The Miracle Mile Residential Association engaged the services of Architectural Resources Group, Inc. [ARG] to perform the survey. ARG will serve as a consultant to the MMRA and will prepare all of the documentation required by the City as part of the HPOZ adoption process.

Katie Horak, Senior Associate and Architectural Historian–Preservation Planner from ARG’s Pasadena office, will supervise the survey of approximately 1,628 parcels containing single- and multi-family residences within the boundaries of the proposed Miracle Mile HPOZ, an area defined by: Fairfax Avenue to the west, La Brea Avenue to the east, Wilshire Boulevard to the north, and San Vicente Boulevard to the south. The HPOZ will not include the commercial and institutional properties within these boundaries.

The survey will detail the historic and architectural significance of the Miracle Mile and identify structures as either “contributing” or “non-contributing” to the district. A contributing structure is a building that was constructed during the predominant period of development in the neighborhood and that has retained most of its historic features. A non-contributing structure is one that was either constructed after the major period of the neighborhood’s development, or has been so significantly altered that it no longer conveys its historic character.

The survey fieldwork involves a team of experts who will document the building styles, materials, and features of each property. This work is performed from the sidewalk and the surveyors will not enter private property. The findings of this survey will be incorporated into a Historic Inventory Report that will be submitted to the City of Los Angeles Office of Historic Resources. This report will also include research on original building permits to gain important information about each building, including architect, builder, date of construction, and original owner.

Once the report is completed, the Department of City Planning will hold public workshops and hearings in the community before taking the HPOZ through the adoption process.

ARG has worked with numerous communities to further their goal of HPOZ adoption, both as advisors and consultants. Recently, ARG completed the historic resources survey of the Wilshire area for SurveyLA, Los Angeles’ first comprehensive program to identify significant buildings and homes throughout L.A.

The MMRA Board of Directors approved a motion to pursue an HPOZ last February. It is the only way to protect the historic character and livability of our community from McMansions and out-of-scale apartment and condo developments.

The cost of pursuing HPOZ protection is substantial: $60,000 – not including the cost of mailings and hosting informational meetings. The Miracle Mile HPOZ Committee is currently preparing an extensive outreach plan to educate the residents on the many benefits of HPOZ and developing a fundraising campaign to help the MMRA with the expenses involved. More information on these plans will be featured in next month’s newsletter.

For additional information:

MMRA Website: HPOZ and RFA Information

Office of Historic Resources: Historic Preservation Overlay Zones

How “Density Bonus” Laws Cut the Community Out of the Loop

How “Density Bonus” Laws Cut the Community Out of Loop

Appeal Denied on 742 South Ridgeley Drive
Apartment Project

A 12-unit condo (foreground) and 45-unit “bonus density” apartment building
(background) under construction on the 700 block of South Ogden Drive.

 

Approval of a new apartment project at 742 South Ridgeley Drive [photo below] was reaffirmed at a February 26, 2015 meeting of the Planning Commission. The commission denied an appeal by Khosrow Ganjianpur, a neighboring property owner.

The project’s developer added two “very low income” units in order to take advantage of the City’s Density Bonus Affordable Housing Incentives to gain a 35% increase in allowable Floor Area Ratio from 3:1 to 4.05:1. The density bonus also allowed a height increase from 45 feet to 56 feet. The 25-unit building will have 46 parking spaces.

“On menu” density bonuses are granted over the counter without public hearings and can only be appealed by abutting property owners or occupants. Mr. Ganjianpur filed an appeal because he felt the project was under parked and would exacerbate already strained on-street parking resources. But the density bonus ordinance permits such projects to supply the minimum amount of parking.

Mr. Ganjianpur also feared that the increased height of the project would create shadow issues for his property. But the City does not require shading impact studies on projects below 60-feet in height and the new building on Ridgeley missed that threshold by four feet.

Apartment developers in the Miracle Mile routinely add low-income units to qualify for automatic increases in height and square footage that circumvent community input or opposition. The ordinance is expressly designed to prohibit appeals by community organizations such as the Miracle Mile Residential Association.

742 South Ridgeley Drive. Photo courtesy of Google Maps.

The “social good” of encouraging low-income affordable housing in otherwise luxury market rate apartment buildings is undermined by the City’s notoriously lax enforcement of conditions placed on developers. No one knows for certain whether low-income units are actually being rented to deserving tenants or being occupied by friends and family members of the developers.

John Schwada reported in a recent MMRA Newsletter that he fears “…that the public could be getting badly hoodwinked – we are allowing the developers to super-size their projects, to work-around our community plans, to create new environmental impacts and yet we don’t have a very firm fix, I believe, on whether we’re getting the benefit of low-income units being rented to eligible tenants.”

The MMRA has a long and successful history of working with developers to mitigate an array of issues including height, shade and shadow, parking, and traffic impacts. But now State and City density bonus laws have cut us out of the loop. We have been silenced.

The density bonus laws have also impeded the community’s ability to negotiate mitigations for new condo developments. If condo developers seeking public support for variances feel that the neighbors are being too “demanding” they can threaten to switch to a density-bonus apartment project. Indeed, this was the case last year when a proposed condo project at 938 South Orange Grove Drive suddenly became an apartment building to evade opposition from nearby residents.

The “gag order” aspect of density bonus laws, allowing unchecked development in our community, contributed to the MMRA’s decision to include R-2 and R-3 zoned multi-family buildings in our pending Miracle Mile Historic Preservation Overlay Zone (HPOZ).

The use of the Ellis Act to evict longtime tenants from historic duplexes and small apartment buildings coupled with Density Bonuses incentives are encouraging the steady destruction of the last vestiges of “affordable” housing in the Miracle Mile. These smaller, older, rent stabilized buildings are being replaced by large high-end apartment projects that are “pricing out” working and middle class tenants.

The MMRA represents renters and homeowners alike. An HPOZ is the only way that the community can be guaranteed any voice in new apartment or condo development in the Miracle Mile. And it is the only way to protect our longtime renters.

For additional information:

MMRA Newsletter, January 15, 2015: Density Bonus Law…City Hall’s Hidden Nightmare

Los Angeles Times, January 6, 2015: In L.A., Conditions Placed on Developers Go Unheeded

MMRA Newsletter, August 15, 2014: Two Projects Under Construction on South Ogden Drive

Miracle Mile HPOZ Update • March 15, 2015

From the MMRA Newsletter, March 15, 2015:

Miracle Mile HPOZ Update

 

A prerequisite to applying for a Historic Preservation Overlay Zone (HPOZ) is the preparation of an Historic Resources Survey. According to the Department of City Planning’s Office of Historic Resources:

The survey details the historic and architectural significance of the neighborhood and identifies structures and features as either “contributing” or “non-contributing” to the district. A contributing structure is a building that was constructed during the predominant period of development in the neighborhood and that has retained most of its historic features. A non-contributing structure is one that was either constructed after the major period of the neighborhood’s development, or has been so significantly altered that it no longer conveys its historic character.

Once the historic resources survey is completed, it is reviewed by Department of City Planning staff for completeness and accuracy. The Department of City Planning also holds public workshops and hearings in the community before taking the HPOZ through the adoption process. An HPOZ becomes effective only after the completed Historic Resources Survey is certified by the Cultural Heritage Commission. Because the HPOZ includes changes to zoning within the proposed area, it must be adopted as an ordinance by the City Planning Commission and the full City Council, following full public hearings.

The Miracle Mile Residential Association’s HPOZ Committee is currently reviewing bids from two firms that specialize in conducting Historic Resource Surveys. Chair Mark Zecca and C0-Chair Jeremy Matz will present the committee’s recommendation to the MMRA Board of Directors at their next meeting on March 19, 2015.

It is expected that the board will take prompt action and that the survey will commence shortly thereafter. It is estimated that it will take six months to complete the survey of the approximately 1600 properties within the proposed Miracle Mile HPOZ boundaries.

The HPOZ Committee’s next task will be to develop a comprehensive outreach and fundraising campaign. The MMRA has limited resources and it is imperative that property owners and renters contribute to subsidizing the cost of commissioning the Historic Resources Survey – an HPOZ will protect the interests of everyone in the Miracle Mile.

If you have questions or would like to participate in helping to secure HPOZ protection for the Miracle Mile please contact HPOZ Committee chair Mark Zecca: phlaidian@gmail.com

For additional information:

Office of Historic Resources: Historic Preservation Overlay Zones 

Miracle Mile Residential Association website: HPOZ & RFA Info

Another McMansion Underway in the Miracle Mile

Another McMansion Underway
in the Miracle Mile

While the Community Waits for City Approval 
of a Temporary Demolition Ban

 A house at 936 South Burnside Avenue was demolished last week to make way for another McMansion. The 1,836 sq. ft. home on a 7700 sq. ft. lot was a probate sale that fetched $1.2 million in October 2014. The property was purchased by Skyan Holdings, LLC., a local development company.

It is readily apparent from the plans submitted to the Department of City Planning that a new two-story McMansion will be constructed on the site. [Here is a link to the plan check and permits issued to date.]

In a conversation with a representative of the developer, a neighbor learned that the developer had rushed to secure a demolition permit in December 2014 because they were aware that the Miracle Mile is on a list of neighborhoods to be included in a pending two-year Interim Control Ordinance [ICO] that would impose temporary restrictions to stop or limit demolitions in areas with pending applications for either a Reduced Floor Area District [RFA] or an Historic Preservation Overlay Zone [HPOZ].

The ICO was presented at the City Council’s Planning and Land Use Management [PLUM] Committee in October 2014. The MMRA submitted a request to create an RFA to Councilmember Tom LaBonge last September to serve as a stopgap measure to allow time for implementation of the Miracle Mile HPOZ. LaBonge placed the Miracle Mile on the ICO list, which includes 14 other communities throughout Los Angeles.

A draft of the ICO was released on February 12, 2015. In the proposed ordinance the Miracle Mile is grouped with South Hollywood, La Brea Hancock Neighborhood, Larchmont Heights, and Old Granada Hills, it reads: “… no building permit shall issue for a Project … unless the proposed structure’s Residential Floor Area does not exceed 120% of the prior existing structure’s Residential Floor Area.”

The MMRA is confident that the Draft ICO, if enacted as written, would effectively stop mansionization in the Miracle Mile. Although, we are continuing to examine the Draft ICO to make certain it contains no loopholes. The MMRA is also concerned that it still allows McMansions in the very early stages of the permitting and approval process to proceed; we will lobby to have these exceptions tightened.

Map of Miracle Mile ICO. Click image to enlarge.

The PLUM Committee is scheduled to hold a public hearing on the ICO on February 24 at 2:30PM. The committee will take public comments and will vote to send the ICO to the full City Council for approval. It appears certain that the Council will adopt the ICO once it is sent to them, but it is critical that the Miracle Mile community turnout in force at the PLUM hearing to ensure that the ICO is not watered-down to accommodate real estate speculators and developers.

Meanwhile, while ICOs are lazily drafted and approved in slow motion, the McMansion developers are playing a game of beat the clock.

A recent New York Times article on mansionization in Los Angeles stated: “… the destruction of thousands of classic homes is disrupting and dividing neighborhoods, raising alarm among civic leaders about potentially irreparable damage to handsome, historic and architecturally distinctive communities that they argue define Los Angeles as much as Hollywood or Venice.

“The phenomenon has left some homeowners living under the shadow of looming block houses that push up against their property lines. Often, the first warning that a neighbor’s home is about to vanish comes from the beep-beep-beep of bulldozers that arrive overnight and can turn a home into a pile of wood and stone by lunchtime.”

That was certainly the case for the neighbors of 936 South Burnside Avenue.

      
808 South Ridgeley Drive • Before and After

For additional information:

Los Angeles City Attorney ICO Report 

Draft ICO, 12 Feb. 2015

New York Times, 6 Feb. 2015: In Los Angeles, Vintage Houses Are Giving Way to Bulldozers

Los Angeles Times, 30 Jan. 2014: McMansions Eat Up Traditional Backyards as Interiors Trump Exteriors

CityWatch L.A., 30 Jan. 2014: Dirty Little Secrets about Mansionization in Los Angeles

MMRA Board Endorses Miracle Mile HPOZ

   

MMRA Board Endorses Miracle Mile HPOZ

Tom LaBonge Sponsors Council Motion
Launching Adoption Process

The Miracle Mile Residential Association Board of Directors endorsed the recommendation of the MMRA HPOZ Committee at its February 5th board meeting and adopted a motion supporting the creation of the Miracle Mile Historic Preservation Overlay Zone [HPOZ].

“The Miracle Mile is in the midst of an onslaught of over-development,” remarked HPOZ Committee co-chair Jeremy Matz, “HPOZ is the only way we can save our neighborhood.”

The proposed boundaries of the Miracle Mile HPOZ are Wilshire Boulevard on the north, San Vicente Boulevard on the south, La Brea Avenue on the east, and Fairfax Avenue on the west. Commercial properties and certain recently constructed large apartment complexes would be excluded.

The first step in the process is to have the adoption of the Miracle Mile HPOZ initiated by a council motion. MMRA President James O’Sullivan reached out to Councilmember Tom LaBonge who quickly agreed to sponsor the motion. “It is only fitting for Tom to do this and put his stamp indelibly on the Miracle Mile,” said O’Sullivan. “As he caps his long career in service to the City, I can’t think of a better ending than to help us preserve our neighborhood for generations to come.”

The Miracle Mile HPOZ has garnered the endorsement of the Miracle Mile Chamber of Commerce. “The Chamber values the special character of the residential area and fully supports the HPOZ effort,” said Steve Kramer, President of the Chamber.

The HPOZ also received a strong endorsement from Mid City West Community Council. Cary Brazeman, Chair of Mid City’s Planning and Land Use Committee, stated, “Mid City West Community Council is pleased to have voted overwhelmingly to support the study and establishment of a Miracle Mile Historic Preservation Overlay Zone that should include single-family and multifamily residences.  The neighborhood is an under-appreciated gem right in the heart of Los Angeles, with architectural history and community character that is abundant.  We encourage the expeditious adoption of the Miracle Mile HPOZ.”

There are many steps in the lengthy process of adopting an HPOZ, including a historic resources survey of the area and extensive community meetings and workshops. [See chart below.]

Click on chart to enlarge.

“This is all about outreach and community involvement,” said HPOZ Committee chair Mark Zecca. “Working within the guidelines of the Department of City Planning, the community needs to design the Miracle Mile HPOZ to meet their goals. There is leeway in an HPOZ preservation plan and it’s up to all of us to determine how restrictive or permissive we want the rules to be.”

Property owners and renters alike will participate in the HPOZ process. MMRA Vice President Ken Hixon commented, “The demolition of older rent stabilized duplexes and apartment buildings are steadily reducing the last vestiges of affordable apartments in the Miracle Mile. As luxury apartments replace older buildings, the neighborhood loses not only its architectural character but its neighborly spirit. Long-term renters in historic apartments sink deep roots into the community. Luxury apartments, which force them out, attract well-paid but transient tenants who are much less likely to develop those kinds of ties to the neighborhood.”

Zecca said that the HPOZ Committee is making plans for a series of meetings to educate residents on HPOZ and to gather their input. The committee will also develop a fund raising campaign to subsidize the costs related to pursuing HPOZ.

The HPOZ Committee is currently reviewing bids from historic preservation consultants who will prepare the historic resources survey of the Miracle Mile. They will make their recommendation to the MMRA Board of Directors at the next board meeting on March 5, 2015.

“It’s not a matter of whether will we still recognize the Miracle Mile in 50 years if we don’t pursue HPOZ protection for our neighborhood,” said MMRA Vice President Alice Cassidy, “it’s a matter of whether we still recognize it five years from now.”

Click on image to view video.

 For additional information visit the “HPOZ & RFA Info” page on the MMRA website: MiracleMileLA.com.

MMRA Mansionization-RFA-HPOZ Survey
Participate in the survey
View the results

Strong Community Support for Miracle Mile HPOZ

Large Turn Out at January 10th Meeting

Approximately 100 residents attended the Miracle Mile Historic Protection Overlay Zone [HPOZ] Meeting on January 10th at Candela/Leonardo’s Night Club. Sponsored by the Miracle Mile Residential Association [MMRA] and hosted by Mark Zecca, MMRA board member and chairperson of the HPOZ committee, the meeting featured a panel composed of Shannon Ryan from the L.A. Office of Historic Resources-HPOZ Unit and Robbie O’Donnell, a founder of the Wilshire Park HPOZ.

Last May the MMRA board of directors created an HPOZ committee to do fact-finding, gather the input of residents and property owners, and report on how an HPOZ might be designed and implemented. The board’s action was sparked by the spread of mansionization into the Miracle Mile.

The HPOZ committee conducted a series of informal meetings with residents and consulted with experts – including Michelle Levy, head of the HPOZ Unit at the Department of City Planning, and Katie Horak, Senior Associate with Architectural Resources Group, Inc.

From left: Shannon Ryan, Robbie O’Donnell, Mark Zecca

The committee also launched an online poll [MMRA Mansionization-RFA-HPOZ Survey] to gauge community support. At the November 2014 MMRA Annual Meeting, which was attended by over 130 residents, a large showing of hands demonstrated interest in pursuing HPOZ protection for the Miracle Mile.

After months of research, outreach, and preparation, the HPOZ committee presented its findings to the community at the January 10th meeting. The advantages and disadvantages of an HPOZ were discussed in detail in a question and answer session following the opening presentation.

The meeting was videotaped and posted in two parts on the MMRA Channel on YouTube. Residents who did not attend the January 10th meeting are encouraged to view the meeting on YouTube. It offers a comprehensive examination of the benefits of HPOZ to our community and honestly examines the impact on property owners – and does so at greater length than can be recounted in this newsletter.

Click on image to view video.
 A

The residents attending the January 10th meeting demonstrated nearly unanimous support for seeking HPOZ status. This support is also reflected in the results of the online survey. As a result, the HPOZ committee will recommend to the MMRA board of directors at its February 5th meeting that the HPOZ application process be initiated and a motion to that effect will be introduced for adoption by the board.

The HPOZ committee will be holding a series of future community meetings to iron out the many details involved in creating an HPOZ: boundaries, design guidelines, financing the required architectural review, etc. For the latest updates and additional information visit the “HPOZ & RFA Info” page on the MMRA website: MiracleMileLA.com.

MMRA Mansionization-RFA-HPOZ Survey
Participate in the survey
View the results