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Westside Digest

Santa Monica : Development Limit Proposed

April 14, 1988

In an effort to curb growth in Santa Monica, City Councilman Dennis Zane has proposed an annual cap on development and on the amount of sewage produced in the city.

Zane, in a statement presented to the City Council Tuesday night, urged that new commercial, retail or hotel development be limited to 150,000 square feet a year. He outlined a number of exemptions, including construction at the Santa Monica Pier, the Third Street Mall renovation and other projects with "significant public-interest objectives."

Zane, a member of the liberal Santa Monicans for Renters' Rights, who is up for reelection this year, also proposed a formula for capping the amount of sewage that could be produced in the city. Once the limit is reached, he said, a moratorium should be imposed to stop additional development that generates more sewage.

Growth is expected to be the key issue in November's City Council election. Some residents have called for a slow-growth initiative to be placed on the ballot.

Zane's colleagues agreed to examine his recommendations at a future meeting. The council is revamping a comprehensive zoning code that already places strict limits on densities and heights of future development projects.

"The City of Santa Monica is under tremendous development pressure unlike that experienced by this community at any other time in its history," Zane said. "Simply reducing the density of individual developments is insufficient to address this difficulty."

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