The city of Santa Monica will oppose a state Coastal Commission staff recommendation that the last link in the 19-mile beach bike path be placed closer to the property lines of homes on Santa Monica's so-called Gold Coast.
City planners have proposed that the path be placed between 200 and 400 feet from the property lines. The path is a one-mile stretch on the beach between California Avenue and the northern city limits.
Teresa Henry, planner for the Coastal Commission, said the bike path proposed by the city of Santa Monica was too far onto the beach, subject to erosion from high tides and too far removed from beach parking lots.
She suggested that it be placed 50 feet from the property lines.
Santa Moncia City Manager John Jalili said that if the commission accepts Henry's recommendation, homeowner lawsuits could delay construction of the path from three to five years.
"It took us two years to get everyone to agree with our existing plan," Jalili said. "To change it now will raise the question of whether it will ever be completed."
Jalili noted that construction of the bikeway started more than a decade ago. Gold Coast homeowners' lawsuits over property lines have been an obstacle to completing the path.
Most of the homes along the proposed path were built during the 1930s and '40s by motion picture moguls, among them Louis B. Mayer, Darryl Zanuck and Harold Lloyd.
The commission is scheduled to consider the staff recommendation Dec. 9.