Traffic Expert Finds Major Roadblock to LA County Development Plans for Marina del Rey

Published Aug 5, 2011

LA County’s 2010 Traffic Study is defective and substantially underestimates local and regional traffic impacts that will result from its redevelopment plans for the Marina, which calls for an additional 1825 residential units, 505 hotel rooms, 1323 restaurant seats, and 334,741 sq. ft. of commercial and office space, according to David Barish, Co-Director of the citizens’ group, We ARE Marina del Rey.

Barish’s group recently hired Tom Brohard, a professional traffic engineer and transportation planner, to review the 2010 Traffic Study. The study was prepared to support LA County’s revised plans for Marina redevelopment set out in their proposed Local Coastal Program Amendment, or LCPA, which was submitted to the California Coastal Commission in March and is scheduled to be heard this October.

According to Brohard’s report, “the 2010 Draft Traffic Study fails to properly identify, analyze, and mitigate all of the significant traffic impacts that will result from the Proposed Project [the LCPA].”

Nancy Marino, Co-Director for We ARE Marina del Rey said, “We hired an expert because we believed the County was misleading the public about the true traffic impacts. But we did not realize how bad it really was. Our calculations reveal that proposed traffic trips are underestimated by 85%.”

Brohard’s report further states “there is 'substantial evidence' that the Proposed Project will have adverse traffic impacts (both inside the unincorporated Marina del Rey and in the neighboring cities that surround the Marina) that have not been properly disclosed, analyzed, and mitigated... each of the significant traffic impacts outside the County's jurisdiction must be considered as 'significant and unavoidable'.”

“This means the County cannot mitigate the additional traffic associated with County plans for the Marina and must reduce development to an acceptable level,” said Marino. “All traffic traveling to or from the Marina must pass through Washington and Lincoln Blvds., and we already know how congested they are.”

A few of the Key Traffic Issues outlined in the Brohard report include:

  • Baseline traffic counts require revision;
  • the 2010 Traffic Study failed to follow the County's Traffic Impact Analysis Guidelines;
  • Some trip generation rates are either outdated or incorrect;
  • Significant traffic impacts and mitigation measures are incomplete;
  • Queuing analysis was not included;
  • All feasible mitigation measures have not been studied.

David Barish, Co-Director of We ARE Marina del Rey, concluded, “County officials have stated repeatedly that traffic will not be a problem and that they are not exceeding their maximum allowed traffic trips and development potential. This report shows how much County misled the public and is just what the Coastal Commission needs to reject the County’s plans outright this October.”

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