Council Approves Zoning Changes to Invigorate Arts and Entertainment Activities and Promote New Business Opportunities within the Third Street Promenade Area and Santa Monica Place

July 27, 2023 11:29 AM

SANTA MONICA, Calif. — Earlier this week, the Santa Monica City Council unanimously approved the first reading of the Interim Zoning Ordinance (IZO) to promote economic recovery in the City’s Downtown, including the Third Street Promenade Area and Santa Monica Place. The proposed IZO is focused on encouraging a more active nightlife and entertainment presence and provides a streamlined review path for arts and entertainment uses, including:

  1. Allowing greater flexibility for restaurants that provide entertainment within the Third Street Promenade area and Santa Monica Place, such as relaxing restrictions on dancing, arcade games, and amplified music requirements.
  2. Expanding the eligibility of Alcohol Exemption (AE) permits in the Promenade Area and Santa Monica Place to other uses that can obtain a permit, such as outdoor rooftop, cultural facilities, instructional services, commercial entertainment/recreation, and convenience markets.
  3. Allowing outdoor rooftop commercial uses such as rooftop cinemas, community assemblies, community gardens, and small/large scale entertainment/recreation facilities, on public parking structures owned by the City.
  4. Allowing the Community Development Director to consider commercial uses that are not clearly defined in the Zoning Code, providing flexibility for unique business proposals.
  5. Allowing a longer term for certain Temporary Use Permits from 45 days to six months.

For more information, see the staff report or view the meeting video here.

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Tati Simonian
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City Council