CVTC Encourages Public Input


The Crescenta Valley Town Council (CVTC), along with with LA County Planning, is hosting an open house workshop on March 30 from 10 a.m. to 12:30 p.m. to discuss changes to the West San Gabriel Valley Plan. Progress will be shared on changes to land use requirements. The Council encourages the public to attend this meeting so the community’s voices can be heard by representatives from the LA County Planning Dept. The session will be held at the La Crescenta Library, 2809 Foothill Blvd.

“We want to listen to the concerns the community has. We want [this meeting] to be a place where the community can become more informed,” said Ines Chessum, who leads the Land Use Committee of the CVTC.

The biggest issues expected to be addressed are the current recommendations of affordability for development, for tenants and for the surrounding community; building height, which was increased from a maximum height of 35 feet to 52 feet; and the number of units allowed in a building.

Another issue Chessum and the Council would like to see addressed is the lack of regulation on how big accessory units can be that are added to existing dwellings in relation to those existing buildings. Other concerns the Council has brought to the county planning department include the use of natural rock as building materials and built-in rather than stand-alone benches. The preservation of the natural environment is important to the Council, said Chessum, because it looks to preserve green space for families who will be living in these developments.

“For young people, this is their community coming up. This will be the community of the future,” said Chessum.

There are no requirements for developers to return to the community after recommendations are made, according to Chessum. She told CV Weekly that although developers have heard the changes based on comments from previous meetings, the Council has yet to see revised plans for the project at Foothill Boulevard and Briggs Avenue.

Before the law was changed, community concerns about any developments would be heard in a public hearing and passed to development boards from a letter of recommendations resulting from community meetings. Now developers are allowed to bypass the hearing process.    

In a letter dated Feb. 26, 2024, Fifth District Supervisor Kathryn Barger stated that developers’ of the project for Briggs and Foothill are “requesting a number of waivers and exemptions to” County zoning codes and the La Crescenta Community Standards District, a set of requirements developed by the town council’s Land Use Committee.

SB 330 prohibits the government from restricting affordable housing projects for certain income brackets and challenges local building and zoning laws, said Chessum. It’s the goal of the Council to make its recommendations within state law while reconciling the law with the demands of the community.

James Drevno with LA County Planning is working with the town council on its draft recommendations. He suggested taking advantage of business improvement districts, pedestrian plans and area plans.

“Area plans are given to everyone, from the locals to the county, so there’s something to point to and say, ‘You said you would do this, now where is it?’” said Drevno.

It is hoped that the timeline and details of the development at Foothill and Briggs and the recommendations being brought to the planning department will be discussed on March 30. County planners will also discuss potential ways to address the exemptions attempted by developers. It is Chessum’s hope that the public will rally to protect their communities from large developments.

“In order for things to change, we need enough people to speak out or nothing changes,” Chessum said.

For additional opportunities to speak to the County or to find additional workshops, see the flyer at the end of this article.