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Local News in Brief : Coastal Panel OKs GM Design Center

The California Coastal Commission has approved a bid by General Motors to build an $11-million advanced design center on Pacific Coast Highway across from Pepperdine University in Malibu.

The proposed General Motors Advanced Concept Center will encompass 85,000 square feet and house 70 employees working on designs to be used by GM beginning in the year 2010, according to a company spokeswoman.

The 24-acre site is on the southwest corner of Pacific Coast Highway and Malibu Canyon Road next to Malibu Bluff State Park.

The commission staff had urged commissioners to reject the design center because it conflicts with the commission’s land-use plan for Malibu, which reserves the site for recreation. The staff also said construction of the center would violate a commission policy against building in the civic center area of Malibu until a community sewer system can be constructed.

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However, the commission voted unanimously last week to approve the project after General Motors and the commission staff agreed to “a substantial list of conditions,” said Jack Liebster, commission spokesman.

General Motors plans to close its design center in Newbury Park and transfer those employees to Malibu once the center is completed.


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