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South Bay Digest

Hermosa Beach : Lot Mergers Ordered

August 14, 1986

After a lengthy and emotional public hearing, the City Council voted 4 to 1 to merge lots in an attempt to minimize further density problems.

The ordinance targets adjoining substandard lots--those less than 4,000 square feet--owned by the same person, but not all such lots are affected.

Asked by the council how many lots the ordinance will affect, Planning Director Mike Schubach said, "Too many to count. They're all over the city." But 227 "significant lots" will be affected, he said. He did not elaborate.

Many residents complained that the mergers will reduce property values because they could sell the lots for more individually. Many who own two or more adjoining substandard lots said they bought those as an investment to sell separately.

The mergers would not be automatic; a public hearing could be requested to prevent a merger.

Mayor Pro Tem John Cioffi, who voted against the ordinance, said everyone who lives in Hermosa Beach is concerned about density but that it would be unfair to reduce property rights.

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