CC Council Okays Zoning Changes to Convert Motels into Homeless Shelters

The Culver City Council this week approved zoning changes which would allow for the conversion of two motels on Sepulveda Boulevard into emergency shelters and transitional housing for the homeless.

The zoning codes were amended in conjunction with the city's grant application for the Project Homekey, a state program that supports the acquisition of hotels, motels and other properties to house people experiencing homelessness in California, city officials said.

If Culver City does receive this one-time state grant, it will use the funds to buy the motels at 3868 and 3900 Sepulveda Blvd. and repurpose them to housing for those in need, city officials said.

At Monday night's Council meeting, Mayor Daniel Lee stated that homelessness has reached an "epidemic proportion" and he praised city staff for applying to this one-time funding to assist the homeless in Culver City.

"I am really excited and hopeful about the Project Homekey application," said Councilmember Alex Fisch. "I came to housing as an issue through my commitment to achieving functional zero homelessness."

Fisch added that this council action brings the city "closer and closer to significant accomplishment."

However, Vice Mayor Albert Vera offered another perspective.

He mentioned he does support the code changes in the hope of obtaining funds for homeless shelters but he raised one issue: Who will be responsible for the operational costs of these facilities?

"We will have to review the operational funding down the line," he said.

Project Homekey is a partnership between Los Angeles County and California to purchase and rehabilitate hotels and motels and convert them into permanent, long-term housing for people experiencing homelessness. It is also supported by $1.2 billion grant from the federal government.


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