Councilman Mike Bonin acts to protect parking in Venice

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Neighbors, shoppers, and tourists frustrated with the lack of parking near Venice Beach are one step closer to seeing tangible solutions that will provide additional parking spaces, thanks to a motion authored by Venice area councilman Mike Bonin.

For the past 15 years, Bonin said developers in Venice have had the option to pay “in-lieu fees” instead of meeting parking requirements for their projects.

While in-lieu fees can be used to fund the construction of public parking lots or other solutions that increase parking capacity, the fees set by the Venice Coastal Zone Specific Plan are outdated and woefully inadequate, Bonin said.

Because in-lieu fees in Venice have not been increased since originally approved in 1999, the fees no longer reflect today’s costs or provide the City a real opportunity to build new parking capacity, he continued.

A motion recently submitted by Bonin will solve this problem by increasing the in-lieu fee to today’s dollars and by ensuring that it continues to remain consistent with inflation.

“We need to get real about providing meaningful parking solutions in Venice so residents, customers, and tourists are able to park near their homes, businesses, and the boardwalk,” said Bonin. “Updating the in-lieu parking fee in Venice will help us put neighborhoods first by allowing the City to finance the construction of parking spaces and increase parking capacity for the neighborhood.”

In addition to asking for in-lieu fees to be updated, Bonin’s motion directs the Planning Department to examine the merits of eliminating, restructuring, or replacing the in-lieu fees, and to examine the benefits and impacts of eliminating “grandfathered” parking rights as part of the upcoming Local Coastal Plan for Venice.

Bonin’s motion is one of a series of actions the Councilmember is taking to improve parking availability in Venice.

Beyond updating in-lieu fees, Bonin is exploring angled parking, public-private partnerships to build new lots, and a comprehensive review of alternatives to in-lieu fees (such as a parking credit system used in cities like Santa Monica).

The fee motion was seconded by Councilmember Jose Huizar and will next be considered by the Planning and Land Use Management Committee.

Read the full motion at: http://www.11thdistrict.com/bonin_acts_to_protect_parking_in_venice

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