Council Denies Zoning Change Near Promenade

In an effort to establish 2nd and 4th streets as pedestrian-friendly areas near Third Street Promenade, the City Council this week rejected a bid to allow ground-floor, street-front office space on those streets.

The council on Tuesday denied a zoning amendment request by the new owner of the Pussycat Theater building to construct offices at the 2nd Street location, said Councilman Michael Feinstein.

The council believes that offices do not draw casual foot traffic, compared to retail establishments and restaurants. However, during Tuesday's vote the council agreed to a compromise that allows ground-level offices on 2nd and 4th streets if they are located at least 25 feet from the building's street front.

Feinstein said the transit mall to be constructed next year will bring additional pedestrians into downtown Santa Monica, which should spur growth on 2nd and 4th streets.

"The market is changing and we are helping it," Feinstein said. "Most of us felt that 2nd is going to be a happening street."

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