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District OKs Office Site Near School

December 06, 1987|JULIO MORAN | Times Staff Writer

Beverly Hills Unified School District officials and Horace Mann School PTA leaders have reached an agreement with a developer for the construction of a three-story office building next to the school at Wilshire and Robertson boulevards.

Developer Paul Amir agreed last week to maintain a 10-foot buffer between his building and the school and to set back the building's third floor an additional 10 feet from the school.

Amir also said he would provide crossing guards at parking entrances to his building, install speed bumps on parking ramps and allow the district to approve the type of retail businesses allowed at the site. The developer also will donate $20,000 worth of playground equipment to the school.

Safety Threat

District officials and parents had complained that the proposed building would pose a threat to the safety of schoolchildren by adding to already heavy traffic congestion in the area.

The parents last month asked the Beverly Hills City Council to adopt an ordinance that would force Amir to construct his building 10 feet away from the school after preliminary plans indicated that the building would be only two feet away from the property line.

The council told the parents and district officials to attempt a compromise with Amir before it would consider adopting the ordinance. The agreement was reached on Tuesday night.

Murray Fischer, an attorney representing the developer, said the only remaining question is whether a parking entrance on Robertson Boulevard can remain open at all times or whether it should be closed for as long as 75 minutes in the morning and afternoon when children are entering and leaving the school grounds.

That decision now will be made by a committee composed of the district superintendent, the city manager and a third person to be named by the two men.

Cost of $1 Million

Fischer said about 4,000 square feet of the building will be lost because of the setbacks, leaving a total of about 110,000 square feet. He said the concessions, new architectural drawings, legal fees and the delay in construction have cost his client more than $1 million.

"Mr. Amir has gone far beyond any developer in this city with respect to working with the school district," Fischer said. "It's a shame that it took so long to make everyone happy."

The project must still be reviewed by the city Architectural Commission before a building permit can be issued.

A spokeswoman for Amir said that if all approvals are granted, construction on the building should begin next summer and completed in late 1989.

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