Beverly Hills Could See 17-Story Project Thanks to Calif.’s ‘Builder’s Remedy’ Rule

The provision allows projects to bypass local zoning rules if jurisdictions are out of compliance with state housing goals.

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Proposed high-rise projects are in the works for Beverly Hills as developers take advantage of a controversial California state housing law that allows developers to circumvent local discretion and gain approval for affordable housing projects in jurisdictions that aren’t meeting their mandated goals.

Soundview Investment Partners wants to build a 17-story mixed-use tower with 56 units that would replace a two-story office building along Rodeo Drive, Urbanize reported. Max Netty, the local real estate investor leading the project, is seeking approval via the “Builder’s Remedy” provision at 145 South Rodeo Drive.

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Netty declined a request for comment from Commercial Observer.

The Builder’s Remedy provision was enacted in 1990 to help developers secure approvals on projects with 20 percent low-income units or 100 percent moderate-income units if a given city or locality is not in compliance with the state’s housing goals. Beverly Hills is one of the 174 jurisdictions currently out of compliance with California’s housing elements, according to the most recent data from the state’s Department of Housing and Community Development (HCD). The city has thus far failed to obtain certification from the department for its housing plans, creating an opening for developers to fast-track the types of projects rarely seen in one of L.A.’s richest areas.

Developer Leo Pustilnikov is spearheading other housing projects using the Builder’s Remedy in Beverly Hills, Santa Monica and Redondo Beach. That includes a proposal for a 19-story mixed-use development at 125-129 South Linden Drive, which would feature 165 units and a 73-room hotel, as well as a 14-story structure with 210 units at 211-217 South Hamilton Drive, both in Beverly Hills, according to a list of the city’s current development projects. 

Beverly Hills has been tasked by the state to produce approximately 3,100 new housing units, including approximately 1,700 affordable units, by 2029. Yet since 2021, the state’s HCD has twice sent the city back to the drawing board for revisions to its housing plan. The HCD’s most recent compliance report indicates the city’s new plan is currently under review, though it does not specify when a decision will be made.

Nick Trombola can be reached at NTrombola@commercialobserver.com.