While it is unusual, there is land that is just too challenging for most people to build on; those are the places that the City of Culver City is looking at for emergency housing, and safe parking for those living in vehicles.
In a preliminary study presented at the Special City Council Meeting on Dec. 9 at 5 pm, Seasonal Shelter Sites were offered for consideration – some were in Los Angeles, some were in both Los Angeles and Culver City – all had history and issues as to why they were not sites for regular construction.
The first site, a lot located in both Los Angeles and Culver City, at 6001 Jefferson Blvd, is slightly more than half an acre, could be used for emergency housing. The second site, at 9910 Jefferson Blvd. is just under an acre near Ballona Creek. Site number three, the CalTrans Lot at Jefferson and Slauson, just over an acre and a half, is owned by the transportation agency and therefore not Los Angeles or Culver City. The Virginia Ave. parking lot, at Virginia Ave. and Ballona Creek, was named as site number four, and the Venice parking lot, at addresses 9415 to 9425 Venice Blvd. was only a quarter of an acre available for site number five. The sixth site is Metropolitan Water District property, the largest by far at more than two acres, is near the 405 Freeway intersection with Sepulveda Boulevard.
Eighteen sites were considered originally, but these six locations were chosen to be both the most suitable and least problematic. None were ideal – the reason these places have not already been used for housing or office space is because of challenges reported on at the meeting; a sewer main running underneath, a steep slope, a problematic location.
Homeless Committee Chair Karlo Silbiger expressed a mild frustration from the podium that this information had not been made available to the committee, and so they were unable to comment.
With the temperatures dropping and a wet winter already underway, the concern for getting people to shelter is clearly an urgent concern of the council, and using any of these sites for either housing or safe parking could help to prevent deaths.