It all began when Restaurant Developer Fran Camaj, otherwise know as ADC Development of Beverly Hills, applied to the city of Los Angeles for a permit to demolish the existing structures at 1305 Abbot Kinney Blvd. and build a restaurant on the site.
Naturally, the city rubber stamped the application even though it did not have adequate parking. Venice residents appealed to the Coastal Commission which found that substantial issues existed, especially the lack of parking. The Commission staff supported the appeal.
The Developer hired Attorney John Henning who had been, and may still be, the lawyer for Mark Ryavec’s Venice Stakeholders Association, which has been leading the effort to bring overnight permit parking to Venice. The Commission voted against it last June.
Henning recently argued before the Venice Neighborhood Council that the solution to the lack of parking for the restaurant is to stack the cars 30 feet high in a mechanical contraption (not to be confused with the photo above).
Camaj also owns another restaurant on Abbot Kinney Blvd. at Milwood Avenue, called Gjelina.
Back at 1305 AKB, some of the units are classified as residential, although they haven’t been used as such since the boulevard became hip and landlords could charge more renting to businesses. The proposed new building would not be mixed use which would allow replacement of the former residential units.
It took the VNC more than an hour to dispose of the car stacking scheme. But this is likely not the end of the road, so to speak, for this latest gentrification plan.