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Beachfront Parcel in Malibu Now Easier to Develop

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Updated 11/22: An undeveloped beachfront parcel in Malibu cleared a legal challenge earlier this fall, inching the parcel closer to development. According to the California Planning & Development Report (sub. req.), neighbors had brought suit to challenge a short public review process, which they said violated the California Environmental Quality Act, and the Coastal Commission's approval of the project with only a small setback from the environmentally-sensitives dunes. The parcel is owned by the Malibu Bay Company. In 2010, the MBC sought an amendment to Malibu's Local Implementation Plan that would split the property into four parcels. To keep its zoning code consistent, Malibu approved an amendment to the Implementation Plan that essentially reduced the required width for all parcels in that district to 45 feet (decreasing from 80 feet).

While that plan was under review by the California Coastal Commission, the CCC imposed a five foot setback from the dune area, "a habitat for the Globose dune beetle, which is considered a 'species of concern' by the federal government," according to the CP&DR (the Local Coastal Program had required a 100 foot setback). That's what led to the lawsuit from neighbors.

A September ruling by the Second District Court of Appeals supported the new, smaller setback and confirmed that the Commission had satisfied the requirements of CEQA.
· Malibu Developer Gets Reduced Setback for Beachside Development [CP&DR]
· There Is Now One More Tiny, Potential Beach-Front House in Malibu [Curbed LA]
· Coastal rules on lot next to Duke's Malibu [Malibu Times]