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Mark Pocan Economic and Social Justice 'Poor Doors' Come To SoCal: Low-Income Residents Of This Proposed WeHo Complex Can Look At The Pool But Can't Swim In It
Wednesday, 06 August 2014 00:28

'Poor Doors' Come To SoCal: Low-Income Residents Of This Proposed WeHo Complex Can Look At The Pool But Can't Swim In It

Written by  Jean Trihn | LaIst
Artist rendering of planned 8899 Beverly development. Artist rendering of planned 8899 Beverly development. (Image via 8899 Beverly)
Developers of a mixed-use building in West Hollywood have proposed building low-income housing within its ritzy complex, but those folks wouldn't be able to share the same amenities as everyone else. The current plans for 8899 Beverly Blvd. have low-income housing overlooking the pool that they wouldn't be able to use, WEHOville reports. The city isn't happy with the proposal.

"This very obvious delineation of amenities runs contrary to West Hollywood’s policies of inclusiveness and equal access for all … Housing staff remains unable to support the proposed project because there would be separate amenity areas for the affordable housing tenants and the market-rate homeowners," according to the city's Community Development Department report.

Folks are calling this a controversial "poor door" practice that has recently come under fire in areas like New York City, which lawmakers have been trying to ban. A mixed-use, luxury high-rise in Manhattan that was approved by New York City Mayor Bill de Blasio was blasted for having a separate, back-door entrance for poor residents.

"To permit developers or encourage them to create separate and unequal buildings and take tax credits and benefits from the city," lawyer Randolph McLaughlin said about the New York building to NPR. "I think that's a constitutional violation."

The proposed development in West Hollywood is being helmed by Townscape Partners of Beverly Hills and Angelo Gordon & Co., who want to expand the sprawling 90,000-square-foot, 10-foot West Hollywood complex that currently serves mostly as offices. They want to transform existing office space into condos, build some single-family homes, as well as tack on a recreation center and indoor pool. WEHOville says that building low-income housing "is a way developers are able to get waivers under state law from meeting certain local zoning requirements."

West Hollywood residents are already up in arms about a proposed development, complaining that the project is massive and the construction would bring in noise, traffic and dust to the community.

The developers have revised some of their original plans, and this Thursday, the Planning Commission will consider the construction plan as well as hear comments from the West Hollywood city planners (who are asking them to reject the plan) and public.

Link to the original article from The LaIst.

Read 2656 times Last modified on Wednesday, 06 August 2014 00:33

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