West Hollywood has ordered a blight analysis of three areas to determine whether the city is qualified to establish a redevelopment district.
The 90-day study will be a parcel-by-parcel examination of economic, physical and social conditions in the Studio area, at the eastern end of the city; the Fairfax area, next to the Studio area, and the Doheny Triangle, at the western end of the city.
The Studio and Fairfax areas are between La Brea and Fairfax avenues along Santa Monica Boulevard. The Doheny Triangle is bounded by Melrose Avenue and San Vicente and Santa Monica boulevards.
Benefits of District
Under state law, a redevelopment district can be established to enable the city to freeze property taxes, issue bonds and redevelop the blighted area. The area in the district must be deemed a community burden that cannot be reversed by private enterprise alone.
The city wants to "eliminate blight and enhance the economic vitality of the redevelopment area," according to Debbie Potter, development manager for West Hollywood.
The city has already completed a study establishing the economic feasibility of redevelopment, Potter said.
Improving the 'Gateway'
The target areas are mostly commercial, but contain old office buildings and auto repair shops that contribute to blight, Potter said.
"Members of the community have communicated a need to upgrade that part of the city," she said, referring to the Studio and Fairfax areas.
In ordering the blight analysis, several City Council members argued that the Doheny Triangle should contain more architecturally interesting buildings because the area is "the gateway to the city," Potter said.
Potter said the city is proceeding with redevelopment step by step, contracting individual studies rather than undertaking one "full-blown" effort because West Hollywood's general plan will not be completed until next year. State law requires that the city have a general plan before it undertakes redevelopment.
The blight analysis is being conducted by Udewitz Associates, a consulting firm.