At the March 28, 2022 City of Culver City City Council Meeting, the City Council voted (4-1) to authorize the Public Works Director/City Engineer to design a temporary sidewalk extension along the north side of Washington Boulevard under the 405 Freeway to increase pedestrian access. This sidewalk widening known as a “bulbout” will include installation of a guard rail along the length of the bulbout to enhance pedestrian safety. The proposed sidewalk bulbout will temporarily occupy approximately 15 parking spaces.
The City Council also directed City Manager John Nachbar, in cooperation with social services, to concentrate outreach efforts and connect people to services that lead to housing, aligning these efforts with the goals of Project Homekey. “Culver City is making progress on the underlying issues causing homelessness and placing our unhoused neighbors in safe and stable living environments,” said Culver City Mayor Dr. Daniel Lee. “As that important work advances, we are also being responsive to concerns about impacts of a growing unhoused community on our public spaces, by making sure that free flowing access is maintained for those of all abilities.”
Due to the COVID-19 pandemic and on-going regional housing pressures, the number of people experiencing homelessness and living on the sidewalk under the 405 Freeway on Washington Boulevard has grown. To alleviate concerns that the tents and shelters in the area may make it more difficult for pedestrians to use the sidewalk, utilizing parking space for the bulbout will provide the additional room needed for pedestrian access, as Culver City advances immediate and long-term efforts to address homelessness.
Witnessing the growth of homelessness in Culver City and in the region, the City of Culver City continues to implement goals outlined in the 2018 Council-adopted Plan to Prevent and Combat Homelessness. Under the plan, the first goal is to increase bridge housing options, such as interim and supportive housing, and increase the numbers of people served. More specifically, the action plan calls for the creation of an emergency shelter through the conversion of local motels. Just two weeks ago, Culver City was awarded a $26.6 million Project Homekey grant from the State of California for the acquisition, rehabilitation, and operation of two local motels. Combined, the motel repurpose projects will create 39 interim housing units for people experiencing homelessness and 37 permanent supportive housing units for individuals experiencing chronic homelessness.
City Engineering staff will design the Project. Additionally, as this area is also within the jurisdiction of Caltrans, a review of the plans and a permit will be required from Caltrans. Upon Caltrans approval of the City’s permit application, City Engineering staff will return to the City Council at a later date to request City Council approval of the plans and budget to fund the construction of the Project. Presently, City Engineering staff estimates that the design work will be ready in approximately June 2022; the project would then be constructed and operational by late July 2022. Pedestrian access will be maintained during construction, and unhoused persons will not be displaced.
For more information about this project, please contact Mr. Yanni Demitri, Public Works Director/City Engineer at [email protected] or by calling (310) 253-5630. The Culver City Homeless Info Line can be reached at (310) 253-6767 to notify the City about a person experiencing homelessness who may benefit from services or to secure copies of the Homeless Resource Guide.
City of Culver City