Planners OK Fees for Projects Adding to Traffic on Westside

The Los Angeles City Planning Commission has unanimously approved a traffic plan that could require developers to contribute as much as $235 million during the next two decades for new turn lanes, synchronized traffic signals, freeway ramps and other transportation projects in Westchester, Mar Vista, Playa del Rey and Venice.

The commission's 5-0 vote is one of the final steps for the model traffic plan, which now goes before the City Council. Council President Pat Russell, whose district encompasses the area, has spent about a year developing the plan to deal with huge growth planned for the region. An 18-month building moratorium has been in effect while Russell and city planners have worked out details of the complex proposal, Russell aide David Grannis said.

Grannis said the long-debated proposal calls for developers to pay $2,010 for every additional rush-hour traffic trip their projects generate--a requirement that makes builders responsible for the demands they place on the highway system. The plan also rewards developers who provide car pools or van pools for their employees, he said.

The plan is expected to affect several large projects planned in the area, including a 1,000-acre Summa Corp. development in Marina del Rey, a 400-acre development on the north side of Los Angeles International Airport and a new Howard Hughes corporate center near Sepulveda Boulevard.

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