Public Review of Plans for 8120 Santa Monica Blvd. Set for Thursday

“Chicago in The Kicks of Route 66,” 2016 (YoMeryl), part of the mural along the 8120 Santa Monica Blvd. lot.

The City of West Hollywood will host a meeting Thursday night to get feedback from residents about interim plans for use of the empty lot on the southwest corner of Santa Monica and North Crescent Heights boulevards.

The meeting will begin at 6:30 p.m. and will take place in the community meeting room on the first floor of City Hall on Santa Monica Boulevard at Sweetzer.

In 2015 the city purchased the lot, which is at 8120 Santa Monica Blvd. and is nearly one acre in size, from Walgreen’s, the drugstore company that had planned to open a location there. The cost was $7 million.

Walgreens had planned to build a shopping plaza with a drug store and other shops and 20 apartments on the property. But it announced in 2015 that it was selling the lot and was closing 200 of its more than 8,000 drug stores in the United States and the U.S. Virgin Islands and Puerto Rico.

Oscar Delgado, the city’s director of public works, said the city doesn’t yet have a long term plan for the site. In the interim, he said, it plans to use it as a parking lot with approximately 95 spaces. That use will be the subject of tomorrow night’s meeting. Residents have expressed concerns about the possible presence of dry cleaning solvents and other materials in the ground, which the city will have to mitigate. The site has been officially identified as a “hazardous materials site.”

“The proposed parking lot will incorporate electric vehicle charging spaces, public art, the Weho Pedals bike share program as well as possible spaces for Zip Cars,” Delgado said in an email message to WEHOville. “It will truly be a multi modal location with trees and landscaping throughout.”

  1. Just what we need Abbe Land Again? The residents clearly dont want lifers on city council by passing term limits. Let new faces be in new places. That is how a strong democracy works

  2. BTW – Where were all you people when the meeting took place? Stop spouting off on WeHoVille, show up and participate.

  3. Recently, Abbe Land has been making what seems to be a lot of public appearances. The word on the street is that she may be running for WeHo Council again.

  4. All the mom and pops that were slowly evicted for this long drawn out project, that now is a dirt lot. Now this is why the #weho democracy is broken. Developer money AKA Abbe Land drove this project. Not the resident. Shes long gone. And we get a fence around a 7 million dollar spot

  5. More affordable housing. Like the idea of green space on top, but it doesn’t make sense to garden/farm on the roof, in my opinion. We could do wonders with ground floor gardening, I am sure. This is very close to my home…
    How long before remediation starts and finishes?
    The air is so filthy here – how did it get so bad without freeways around the corner and no major industry?

  6. I doubt making it a homeless shelter is going to go over well with the many people I know who pay crazy rents to live in WeHo but have to constantly deal with aggressive homeless whenever they want to walk anywhere. At any rate, I hope everyone who goes to this meeting (and ANY meeting like this) is civil. I’ve been to a number of them and the strident, childish entitlement by some of our residents (and other interested parties) can be stomach turning. Some people truly are just looking to be David vs.a (wrongly-perceived) Goliath (the City). Childhood issues, I guess, but embarrassing (and counter-productive) nonetheless.

  7. Oh I can’t resist – why don’t we have a design competition for a mixed use building that combines Affordable Housing w/roof gardens that provide not only Oxygen where it is sorely needed, but produce healthy produce that is good for everyone who participates.
    I also echo the suggestion of first or first and second level co-working space specifically for non-profits. WeWork has one location on La Brea and is moving in to two floors of the Red building at pdc – but the rates that they charge – especially for startups, is prohibitive. Shared offices enable lots of small enterprises to work adjacent to one and other – and the synergy proves over and over to be extremely rewarding. We should use the fiasco that happened at the former French Market as a lesson and example of how not to do this kind of thing.

    The roof might also be an excellent place for a shared green space, half dog play area, half city farm. There are several new electro-voltaic panels available that are much higher output than the ones on other buildings in the affordable portfolio, some even translucent that could provide all of the power necessary to run the lower-non-residential levels, and the lighting on the roof at zero cost. Since we have a blank sheet at present – especially if we write platinum level green certification into the design competition requirements, we can really do something special there. Something in contrast to buildings like ‘the crown’ where 500 sq.ft. apartments get 150 of those feet from the balcony. That means 350 sq ft of living space – that is criminal.

    For people in affordable housing – tiny units are as problematic as can be since many times, more than one person has to live in an apartment originally intended for the use of one person. Throw in any special needs like assistive equipment, and you are automatically in violation with standards set by various agencies. Let’s think out of the box instead of doing something the way we usually do and see what the possibilities are.

  8. Build a park. Do it. The City is park poor already – plant trees and provide shade and peace for people to relax

  9. I echo the calls for a mixed-use affordable housing building with office space for some of WeHo’s many non-profit service organizations, maybe containing micro-housing for young people moving to WeHo to start their lives as has been mentioned in the past. Put a public park space on the roof away from the traffic below and dig deep for plenty of underground parking. When I investigated using the property for something last year, I was told by the City that soil testing for contaminates was being done last November. I’m assuming that nothing was found since no clean up has taken place in the time since then..


    300 page recorded document for 8120 smb
    See pages 290-300. Local residents letters concerned about underground toxic contamination expressing concern about walgreen (I imagine any construction requiring digging up the ground to pour a foundation.

    Google pub recorded with county property info. At least 14 know serious toxic underground waste/contamination. What I suspect the real reason walgreens dropped the project, after leveling structures, but before touching/digging the ground pre construction.


  11. Love the idea of integrating green space and definitely like the idea of more charging stations. However, the city needs to carefully consider how this is implemented. It is not cost efficient to pay $1+/hr to charge and also an hourly fee to park. This is the case with almost all of locations in Weho and reason why the chargers often set empty in pay lots/garages. Take a look at Santa Monica. They offer 2hr free parking and 2hr free charging in their garages and last I checked EV drivers can park for free at all metered stations. Other cities such as Beverly Hills charges for the use of the stations, however they are placed in garages where patrons can park for free for several hours. Same with the Beverly Hills library.

  12. I agree that a space for non-profits is a great idea. A lot of them have been squeezed out of the city, and they are an important part of the LGBT community. I’d like to see more remain in West Hollywood, instead of being pushed out to other neighborhoods.

    Whatever they eventually build on this lot (once they figure out what to do about the ground contamination), I really, really hope for a rooftop park, like what was built on top of Restoration Hardware. Even if it is only for daytime use, more greenspace is desperately needed in this city, and there are few places to put it. The city owns this property, so they can make it happen.

  13. jk – How about YOU move to Bakersfield, so the city can humanely offer more affordable housing. At a Council meeting when the two homes south of Gelson’s were to be demolished, John (yet again Mayor) Heilman stated that if the City owned that property, it would be all affordable housing. Why not 8120 SMB which the City does own?!?!

  14. WeHo’s very own Comprehensive Homeless Shelter. Let’s end homelessness front and center, not in the shadows.

  15. I’m hoping for a mixed use building, with low cost office space for the non-profits that The City contracts with so they can stay in our City (we lost PAWS a number of years ago & an HIV/AIDS research facility and Being Alive is always struggling) along with affordable housing, parking, both public and for the building (love the idea of more charging stations as they are few and far between in West Hollywood) and if we could squeeze in some green space….

  16. Make it parking/ park. Be great if parking could be below ground with green space at street level to match park across street. Could be a nice gateway to Weho instead of another boring retail building which we already have a ton of on smb (though with no theme or guidelines so it looks like a trashy street for most of smb). My vote is a park. Enough with the affordable housing comments. L.A. is not affordable. I have 2 jobs and if I can’t afford to live in a desirable area, I move to a less desirable one. That’s how supply and demand and markets work. Move to Bakersfield people. Cities aren’t cheap..that’s just the way it is. Deal with it. WE need more green space or else the city just looks like a bunch of prison boxes.

  17. I recall reports of extreme chemical leeching on the property, running west. Not sure how mitigation could occur without the removal of virtually all the ground soil down many feet.
    You, know, as in underground parking garage.

  18. Do a land swap and provide subsidies to Gelsons to build a new store with apartments overhead. Take over the existing Gelsons as an extension of City Hall

  19. Affordable housing is a good use. It’s right on this busy intersection with immediate access to public transit. And offices for social service agencies and vital nonprofits which can’t afford the high rent in WeHo would also serve the community needs. As much parking as possible wouldn’t hurt either. The big unknown question is what it will cost to remediate the soil so something can be built.

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