Altadena : New Liquor Store Limits

In a bid to fight crime and loitering in Altadena, the Los Angeles County Board of Supervisors has approved a zoning law that prohibits construction of liquor stores in the unincorporated community within 500 feet of existing liquor stores.

The law, approved unanimously Thursday, followed the supervisors’ creation in 1987 of a special Altadena “Community Standards District.” The district required issuance of special permits for the construction of new liquor stores in the community.

The new action--endorsed by the community-elected Altadena Town Council--stiffens that regulation by adding the 500-foot limit.

Increased regulation of liquor sales has become even more important recently as the state has laid off many of its Alcoholic Beverage Control officers, said Robert Hoie, a supervising regional planner with the county.


“The impression is that liquor stores become sort of a focusing point for illicit activity,” Hoie said. “When you have two or three on a single block, it’s extremely competitive and the temptation is to sell to anyone who walks through the door, whether it’s an 8-year-old or whoever.”

The supervisors have asked their lawyers to draft a countywide ordinance similar to the Altadena law.