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You May Be Dead Before WeHo Walgreens Project Breaks Ground

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Once upon a time, a drugstore hoped to open at Santa Monica Blvd. and Crescent Heights, but was stymied by neighbors (be nice and don't call them NIMBYS), environmental impact reports, and forgetfulness. The story of this project dates back to 2007, when developer Pacific Development Partners hoped to turn a forlorn stripmall at SMB and CH (infamous home of Tasty Donuts) into a mixed-use project with 28 units of housing, with a Walgreens and other retail at the bottom. Neighbors decried the size and the traffic issues they believed would ensue; they also uncovered issues of toxicity in the area related to soil contamination by a nearby dry cleaner and a former gas station. An EIR was ordered in 2009 and a draft was just recently finished and handed over to West Hollywood City Hall. The project has been downsized--it went from a total of 52,000 sq. feet to 36,000, and from 28 units to 20, with a two-unit freestanding housing structure on nearby Hayvenhurst. But kids, this is when the story really gets good!

Perhaps not surprisingly, one of the people behind nowalgreens.blogspot.com, Dennis Grant, still thinks the now-smaller project is still too big, according to WeHo News. A bigger issue is that the developer didn't notify the California Regional Water Quality Control Board--which cleaned up the toxicity--of the completion of the draft EIR and the time period for comments. After finding out about it, the Control Board sent a letter on May 6, three days before the end of the comment period, requesting an extension. “The comment period has been extended to July 11, 2011. Notice of the extension will be provided,” chief planner John Keho told WeHo News. Meanwhile, Tasty Donuts prepares for the Rapture.
· One More Snafu In Walgreens Development [WeHo News]
· Walgreens Developer Agrees to Report [Curbed LA]