A recent revision to the state’s earthquake fault map has added 146 lots (covering a total of 43 acres) to the Hollywood Earthquake Fault zone in West Hollywood. That means a developer proposing a new development on any of those lots must conduct a complex and expensive “fault rupture investigation” to ensure that the project won’t be within 50 feet of an actual fault.
That investigation involves digging deep trenches to locate the fault and determine whether it has been active within the last 11,000 years.
The 9.3-mile Hollywood Earthquake Fault runs from West Hollywood east to Atwater. In 2001, the City of West Hollywood identified two zones around the fault for which special rules were put in place for new development. Fault protection zone 1 includes land where an active fault is likely, and thus developers of new projects must conduct the fault rupture investigation. Fault protection zone 2 is an area less likely to contain a fault. Rather than conduct a fault rupture investigation in zone 2, a developer can reinforce a building’s foundation to protect it from an earthquake shake.
The revised state map places lots on the north side of Sunset Boulevard from Londonderry Place on the west to Sweetzer Avenue on the east in the “fault rupture investigation” zone. Further west, the revised state map now includes lots on the south side of Sunset between Hammond Street and San Vicente Boulevard.
In the Norma Triangle neighborhood, the state map also extends the FP1 zone over Cynthia Avenue, adding the area bordered on the south by West Vista Grande Street, on the west by Doheny Drive and on the east by North Hilldale Avenue.
The revised state map has removed 42 lots from the city’s current FP1 zone. They include most of those on the existing city map that are south of Fountain Avenue from Hacienda Place west to Harper Avenue. Also removed from the state map are many of the lots north of Fountain Avenue from Harper to Crescent Heights Boulevard.
The city’s Planning Commission on Nov. 21 will be asked to consider a proposal from the Planning and Urban Development Services Department that those proposing to develop new buildings on lots moved out of the FP1 zone on the state map or to build on the current FP2 zone lots be required to either conduct a fault rupture investigation or provide reinforced foundations.
Under the state’s Alquist Priolo Earthquake Fault Zoning Act, the California Geological Survey agency is required to compile detailed maps of the surface traces of known active faults, which are updated from time to time. Owners of property in fault zones must disclose that to prospective buyers, however, they are not required to make that disclosure to renters.
The Planning Commission will consider the staff proposal at its meeting on Nov. 21 at 6:30 p.m. in the City Council Chambers, 625 N. San Vicente Blvd. Parking is free in the adjacent parking structure with a ticket validated in the lobby.