The Meeting Also Resolved The Issue Of Purchasing the Martin B. Retting Gun Store
By Dolores Quintana
In a meeting held on Monday, September 11th, 2023, the Culver City City Council voted 3-2 to ratify proposed changes to the MOVE Culver City pilot project, along with granting a California Environmental Quality Act (CEQA) exemption. The MOVE Culver City initiative, led by the city, reimagines urban streets as communal spaces, emphasizing the efficient and secure movement of people in street design.
Since the project’s inception in 2021, the City has diligently assessed its progress and collected public input. The updated plans for the pilot program, as approved by the City Council, introduce a shared bus and bicycle lane in both directions while reallocating on-street parking. The overarching objective of the pilot is to enhance infrastructure and services to promote alternative mobility solutions, offering the community equitable, accessible, and sustainable transportation alternatives.
The revised plans feature the installation of bike boxes at seven strategic locations along the corridor. These designated areas at signalized intersections provide bicyclists with a secure and visible path ahead of stopped traffic. Additionally, “bike buddy” signals, human-scale traffic lights aimed at improved visibility, and continental crosswalks, defining pedestrian crossing zones, will be strategically placed in the downtown area.
The City Council will proceed to award the construction contract during its meeting on October 9th. The western phase of the project, encompassing Culver Boulevard between Duquesne Avenue and Canfield Avenue, as well as Washington Boulevard between Ince Boulevard and La Cienega Boulevard, is anticipated to conclude in December. Subsequently, the eastern phase, spanning Washington Boulevard from La Cienega Boulevard to Fairfax Avenue and Adams Boulevard from Washington Boulevard to Fairfax Avenue, will enter the final design and procurement stages in 2024, with a target completion date of August 2024.
Earlier during the meeting, the City Council engaged with over 35 residents who voiced their opinions regarding the acquisition of the Martin B. Retting gun store property located at 11029 Washington Boulevard. The City Council unanimously resolved to acquire the property for $6.5 million, eliciting applause from attendees. Following the completion of the City’s purchase, the Council directed that the building undergo immediate repainting and that a robust community engagement process determine the property’s future utilization.
The City Council refrained from taking action on reducing the cannabis business tax rate for cannabis distribution from 2% to 0%. Instead, they opted to task the Culver City Finance Advisory Committee with studying the proposal and providing a recommendation for future consideration by the City Council.
The meeting concluded with the City Council voting in favor of issuing a letter of support to the non-profit organization Streets for All. This letter supports their application for the U.S. Department of Transportation’s “Reconnecting Community and Neighborhoods Program” grant. The grant, if secured, would fund a feasibility study for the Marina Central Park concept. This innovative idea envisions repurposing the space currently occupied by the Marina Freeway (CA-90) into affordable housing, retail space, outdoor areas, and dedicated bus lanes.
For more detailed information, please refer to the September 11, 2023 City Council meeting agenda, accessible online. Additionally, an archived video of the meeting can be found on the City’s website.