In a late afternoon session on Tuesday, October 14 at City Hall, the Central Area Planning Commission voted unanimously to deny the variance request of the Larchmont Bungalow for exemption from the zoning ordinance on Larchmont Boulevard that limits the number of restaurants.
Jerry Neuman, attorney for Albert Mizrahi, owner of the Larchmont Bungalow, presented his case before the five member planning commission. Lisa Schechter, Deputy Chief of Staff for Councilman Tom LaBonge urged the commission to support the planning department’s staff report recommending denial of the zone variance.
There were about equal numbers of people testifying in favor of the request and against it. A large number of neighbors attended and spoke in support of the planning department.
In denying the zone change request, the commission agreed with the planning staff report that spot zoning exceptions to the Larchmont “Q” Conditions would not be consistent with good planning.
The Bungalow requested a zone change to delete from its parcel the [Q] condition restricting the number of restaurants on Larchmont. They also asked for a waiver from city parking requirements so the Bungalow can use its seven existing parking spaces instead of the 25 spaces required for a restaurant of its size…and a Conditional Use Permit to sell beer and wine at the 107 North Larchmont Boulevard location.
According to John Welborne, Vice President for Planning and Land Use Windsor Square Association, there are a couple of possibilities:
- The owner can remove the tables and chairs and operate the Bungalow as the take out place it is zoned for. The extra space in the large facility can be used for allowable retail or other allowable uses.
- The owner can continue to delay by appealing today’s unanimous Commission decision to the City Council.
It is likely that ultimately, Judges will support the City’s enforcement of the adopted law.