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Tuesday, December 20, 2011

Get to Know SEADIP Because You'll Be Hearing a Lot About It

There is much confusion over exactly what is SEADIP in Long Beach, how it came about, whether or not it has to be followed today and why the issues it dealt with are the very same ones now being raised by potential developers at 2nd and PCH.

In the 1970's Long Beach was famous for allowing the building of developments without much care for their impact. The City Planning Director in fact was convicted of taking more than $52,000 in bribes from a team of architects who worked on 6 projects..that by the way were built...including Marina Pacifica (at that time the largest building permit ever issued by the City Planning Department).

The City Manager resigned before being ousted and the Council formed taskforces to deal with a number of issues including: citizen participation, reforming appointments to committees, commissions and boards.

Prior to the arrest of the planning director a citizen taskforce north of Seal Beach. The plan to be developed was called Southeast Area Development and Improvement Plan (SEADIP). Members of the taskforce became very upset when it was disclosed that 4 of the developments for which bribes were accepted were in the area being studied for regulation.

The focus of the taskforce was to deal with development in a responsible way that did not adversely impact the existing neighborhoods. Residents contended that PCH and Second Streets were clogged.
They argued that projects already under way (Marina Pacifica Shopping Center and the Market
Place) were too big for their approaches and that coordination of planning between city and developers
was inadequate.

As the Chairwoman Jan Hall told the local press: "It would be a tragedy to allow high density development in the SEADIP area that would compel unacceptable traffic conditions or radical measures..."

One of many newspaper articles pointed out that increasing the density of the SEADIP area would not be consistent with the Naples-like character recommended for the area in a shore line study done for the city by Sasaki-Walker.

When the 113 page document was finalized by the taskforce and adopted by the Planning Commission, SEADIP was hailed in editorials by the local press because it was a compromise of development with preservation. -- setting a maximum commercial building height of 35 feet.

SEADIP became an amendment to the 1961 general plan and was adopted unanimously by the City Council in 1977.

See below to read a series of newspaper accounts of what went on during the formation of SEADIP.
 Traffic Snarls SEADIP
Del Sol Project Approved
Beginnings of SEADIP
SEADIP Talks Extended
SEADIP Hearings
LB City Council Adopts SEADIP
 SEADIP A Dilmemma for the City
 Heart and Soul of SEADIP Gets Approved
Citizens Help in Planning
The Map of Long Beach's Last Frontier
Editorial Praising SEADIP

There are many more articles on SEADIP. But these should give you an idea of the intent and purpose of those many citizen meetings.

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