HALB Property development. It’s now down to 9-story towers. Protesters won. Now let’s face the inevitable. [OPINION]

This opinion is going to be so unpopular (and I kinda don’t care).

That beachfront Hebrew Academy of Long Beach  (HALB) property: The original 73rd Meridian-plan called for two 15-story buildings with eight townhouses with a total of 166 units. The second proposal scaled down to two 12-story buildings, eight townhouses and 130 units.  What’s the latest? Ben Strack, writing for the Long Beach Herald tells us:

“Now 73rd Meridian has proposed two nine-story, 120-foot-tall structures with 294 parking spaces — 30 percent more than required, according to the developer. The new project would also include a six-story, 85-foot-tall building in the center of the property as well as a previously planned clubhouse, and have a total of 126 units. [LINK]

Less density, more parking, shorter towers. The overdevelopment people won. You got these towers knocked down from 15 stories to 9. BRAVO!!! Now let’s allow the inevitable: development of that property the only way anybody with money would ever want to develop it. 

I know it’s cool to say “stop the overdevelopment,” but what else do residents want on that property? A park? Of course! But technically, there is a park in that area already. It’s called the beach. You all want a large parking lot, right? Nobody in their right mind is going to buy that multi-million dollar beach-front property for a parking lot just because “it’s the right thing to do for the community.” Would you? That is, unless you won the lottery or found yourself in a Brewster’s Millions situation.

Honestly, what do you folks realistically think is appropriate for that lot? You can’t just stop all development because of a few lost views. Is there a water issue? Is there a sewer issue? That, I can get behind, but then our city should just say it and stop entertaining all these proposals. Us folks in Long Beach live in an extremely rare situation where there is beachfront property that’s just a train ride away from the greatest city in the world. Single story family houses for that plot just isn’t going to cut it.

BUILD, BUT DON’T DESTROY. Isn’t that what those signs say?

I wrote this back in August and I’m sticking by it:

“I love the message on the sign: Build, But Don’t Destroy. I try to make some sort of effort of not being a NIMBY-type, so I am for development. I feel it’s extremely unrealistic to think that we can stop all beach front development from happening. The last thing I want is to live in a community filled with dilapidated-looking buildings. With that, as a community we must ask ourselves: What kind of progress do we want? What kind of progress can we sustain? And, what’s the deal with zoning? Should the city come up with a final plan that we all can agree on? AKA: It’s either this way or no way.

Some past SBTC articles on this topic


Please read the terms of service before you comment.