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By Letters 

Ample Capacity to Build in Culver City


December 9, 2021

Dear Editor,

Have you ever wondered why there is a shortage of housing in Culver City? I own residential housing in Clarkdale and I wonder about this myself. When I purchased a newly-built fourplex in 1988, I didn’t realize it was nearing the end of a building boom in Culver City. In the more than three decades that followed, I have seen very few new housing units under construction.

At that time, Culver City was a great place to build. There was no rent control. Taxes and fees were reasonable. Crime was relatively low. It was a desirable place to live.

In the 1990s, gangs moved in and wreaked havoc until community involvement our great Culver City Police Department targeted gang leaders and restored peace. Yet, new construction failed to become realized in any great numbers.

Today, we have state and local rent control, substantially higher taxes and fees, and new per-unit fees and higher transfer taxes, not to mention higher costs for refuse collection, water, electricity and natural gas. Increasing the cost of housing discourages building new housing units. But that doesn’t seem to be the root cause of a lack of new housing units.

The state implemented SB9 and SB10 that prohibits local jurisdictions from denying requests to build up to 4 units in single family neighborhoods, and up to 10 units on combined lots. Culver City is considering its own similar ordinance.

Yet, the root cause of excess capacity in multifamily neighborhoods has never been studied. Unreasonable claims of racism and white supremacy doesn’t explain it; builders will build anywhere, especially in a community as desirable as Culver City. There is ample capacity in Culver City to build out excess capacity and leave single family neighborhoods alone.

There is something slowing the development of new housing units. A lack of space isn’t it. What is the root cause?

Dennis Page


Culver City


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