By Carolyn Rios
As reported in last month’s Beachhead, the Postal Annex on Windward Circle is up for sale.
This is the last available site in Venice that could solve our two biggest problems – parking and homelessness. The Postal Annex is the perfect site for:
1. Ground-level parking, desperately needed in Venice due to severe overdevelopment and use of “grandfathered” parking spots. This lot is conveniently located close to both the beach and the Abbot Kinney business district. Parking fines and fees have been put aside for years that could help fund this proposal.
2. Transitional housing on the 2nd and 3rd stories, with full services, for 30 people, possibly modeled after the highly successful OPCC Turning Point Program in Santa Monica, which has moved 60 homeless people into permanent housing.
The postal annex is located on four major bus lines so clients can easily get to jobs, services, schools in Santa Monica, Culver City and Los Angeles.
There is funding available from both the city, and county, and probably federal government to provide these desperately needed services.
We need to identify these sources and ACT NOW before private developers get in the way.
3. This could be a model “green” building with rooftop gardens and all, possibly opening up additional funding.
The site is large enough that the building itself could be set back 20 – 30 feet with landscaped parking to provide both beauty and privacy. Each story can be set back further with gardens on the balconies and roof.
Government officials must immediately stop any idea of selling this to private developers.
Imagine 50 or more additional parking spots between Abbot Kinney and the beach, just where they are needed the most. Imagine taking 30 homeless people each year off the beach. Imagine !!!
However the community decides to use this lot, it is vital that the community get this property for local needs.