Historic Preservation Commission to Reconsider Palm Avenue Project

(Levin-Morris Architects Inc.)

In a “virtual” meeting on July 27, the West Hollywood Historic Preservation Commission will reconsider a previously rejected plan for a building on Palm Avenue that will provide housing and care for the elderly.

The building is proposed for the lots at 923-931 N. Palm Ave. It would contain 48 studio apartment units, with a stand-along bungalow on the lot used as another senior housing unit. There would be parking underneath the building. It would be behind two other bungalows at 927 and 931 Palm Ave., just north of Cynthia Street, that were designated as historic landmarks in 2013.

In July 2017, the Commission refused to approve the project, agreeing with neighbors of the site that the four-story building would overwhelm the two historic bungalows. Federal historic property guidelines allow new structures to be built adjacent to the historic homes, provided that “when visible and in close proximity to historic buildings, the new construction must be subordinate to these [historic] buildings.”

The commissioners said they believed the new building would drastically alter the intent of the historic designation, which was to preserve a feeling of what the Old Sherman district was like when the bungalows were built in 1902.

Duff Bennett, who lives in the house at the rear of the 931 Palm property and was an organizer of the opposition in 2017, has begun alerting neighbors to the upcoming virtual meeting. Bennett has asked them to call in and express their opposition.

West Hollywood, which has developed a number of “aging in place” programs to help its elderly residents stay in the city, has no senior living facilities. That was called out earlier this year when Jeanne Dobrin, a long-time resident who was active in civic affairs, died at the age of 99 at a senior care facility on Highland Avenue. “‘ Aging in place’ is a myth if we cannot partner with a developer or hospital or nursing home to create a state of the art assisted living facility / senior living center within West Hollywood,” said Larry Block in an op-ed published in WEHOville.

The architect for the project is Ed Levin, a member of the Historic Preservation Commission, who in 2017 recused himself from voting on it because that would be a conflict of interest.

The meeting will take place at 7 p.m. on Monday, July 27.  The city has yet to publish the event on its online meeting calendar or offer information as to how residents can tune in to participate in it. When that information is available, WEHOville will update this story to include it.

Correction: An earlier version of this story said the meeting would take place this coming Monday. Actually it is scheduled for July 27. The story has been updated with that correction.

4.7 3 votes
Article Rating

Subscribe
Notify of
guest

This site uses Akismet to reduce spam. Learn how your comment data is processed.

13 Comments
Newest
Oldest
Inline Feedbacks
View all comments
Weho Truth Talk
Weho Truth Talk
2 days ago

It’s so sad to see all these Karens opposing housing for the elderly.

The selfish NIMBYism is so depressing in West Hollywood. Tree covering? You realize that more density helps fight climate change too, right? Or will you ignore the studies showing that, the same way you ignore the studies saying that vaccines work?

Vigilant
Vigilant
4 days ago

A picket fence in front of a Brutalist building does not a historic site make.

Vigilant
Vigilant
10 days ago

This is an opportunistic and spectacularly ill conceived project. Overall it dishonors the spirit and requirements of the Historic Preservation Ordinance and its guiding documents as per the Secretary of Interior Standards.

A compatible project is possible in the hands of an architect skilled who has produced projects of a historic nature. As it stands, this project, produced by the unskilled and guided by the unknowing, undermines our local history and defeats the purpose of local historic preservation.

M. Murphy Martell
M. Murphy Martell
18 days ago

The people who live along picturesque Betty Way, on Larrabee, will be suffering from the loss of large shady trees and the horror of another large apt building crowding them in! Two of these bungalows are at the tree-shaded end of their tiny beautiful block. Perhaps the residents on Betty Way will have some clout with the WEHO people to stop this desecration.  

Jerome Cleary
Jerome Cleary
19 days ago

Why not build this project at the empty lot that the city already owns located at: Crescent Heights and Santa Monica Blvd?

Manny
Manny
17 days ago
Reply to  Jerome Cleary

Sure, if you want to wait 20 years. Any city owned property, like the Crescent Heights plot you mention, must go through rigorous public comment and public hearing process. Residents will fight for a dog park, underground parking, no underground parking, senior housing, workforce housing, three stories, nine stories, non profit store fronts, for profit store fronts, a much needed dodgeball field, the list goes on and on.
 
Take a look at 1343 Laurel and Plummer Park. Two city owned properties that have gone nowhere. The clock is ticking, and no one is getting any younger.

Jerome Cleary
Jerome Cleary
19 days ago

Ed Levin voted against historically preserving Tower Records!

Duff Bennett
Duff Bennett
19 days ago

I agree with Ms. Dobrin, we must take care of our Seniors. 15% of West Hollywood residents are Seniors’, which is 4% higher than Los Angeles County, 51% of our City’s Seniors identify as disabled. *based on 2010 Census* Our City’s designated Historical Landmark are also in need of care, what Dylan Corporation and Mr. Ed Levin propose will generously enrich them but the eternal cost to the public will endure. Fortunately, other members of our City’s Historical Preservation Commission care. As stated in this article, they must conform to the Secretary of the Interiors Guidelines for Historical Properties,  … Read more »

Jonathan Simmons
Jonathan Simmons
4 days ago
Reply to  Duff Bennett

At the moment, any statistic about future age populations are impossible to make. If Trump and the REPUBLICAN SHEEP IN THE SENATE, Covid infections kill elderly people at the highest rate. If nobody will acknowledge the threat, REFUTE WITH DATA (AND GRAVES & REFRIGERATED CORPSE) THAT TRUMP IS INTENTIONALLY OUTRIGHT LYING DAILY saying publicly there is no Corona Outbreak in US, and HIS actions halted the virus better than anywhere in the world, and fart left media is making this pandemic up, we may not have enough elderly people left alive to every describe “Elderly Community” as existing in any… Read more »

WeHo Resident
WeHo Resident
19 days ago

Obviously this building comprising 48 apartments is not consistent with “new construction must be subordinate to these [historic] buildings.” Instead it dwarfs and visually dominates the two bungalows. It also will add traffic to a street that already experiences horrible traffic jams, and will remove much needed trees and green space from the neighborhood.   It’s not as if this is the only place to add a senior living facility in WeHo. Palm even has one disadvantage unique to this proposed use. I live on Palm and have an elderly relative that visits, and the hill of Palm Ave basically… Read more »

Vigilant
Vigilant
19 days ago

Dear Wehoville, please include the date of Monday July 27, 2020 @7:00 for the HPC Teleconference in the body of your article and preferably in the headline.
Thank you.

Henry (Hank) Scott
Admin
19 days ago
Reply to  Vigilant

The article already includes the date and time of the meeting.

Todd
Todd
19 days ago

I absolutely hate the design. The architect phoned in this rendering. There is not even the slightest nod to the historic bungalows. Zero. Nada. Find an architect with more imagination and the decree can’t be to simply maximize every square inch. I’d be interested in having a bunch of studios with no parking for people with no cars who either walk, take public transit or rideshare. You can easily make this multigenerational by also having communal areas and provide for aging in place.

13
0
Would love your thoughts, please comment.x
()
x