Affordable housing proposals in California neighborhoods prompt protests

As city leaders struggle to find ways to get people off the streets and create affordable housing for those experiencing homelessness in Los Angeles, many residents are pushing back at rezoning proposals that would allow single-family lots to become high-rise apartments in the middle of residential neighborhoods. 

On Tuesday, dozens of Westchester residents rallied before a neighborhood council meeting and their message was clear.  

“The thing we’re demanding is that single-family homes and du-triplex homes are removed from the map,” Westchester resident Jolie Delja told KTLA’s Omar Lewis. “There is no reason to upzone people’s residential properties.”  

The City of Los Angeles is currently working on updating its general plan, which outlines how and where the city will develop in the future. This includes making changes to zoning regulations for specific neighborhoods and adding thousands of additional housing units.  

“It’s triple the number of units that we have right now with absolutely no infrastructure improvements,” Delja added.  

Westchester resident Eric Moore has lived in his home since 2005 and says he’s afraid the current plans mean more new apartments going up in his backyard and impacting his property value.  

“I mean, when I look up, I see 16 windows looking down on me,” he said. “That has changed everything for us.” 

Westchester residents seen protesting proposals to add multi-unit affordable housing in single-family residential neighborhoods on Oct. 3, 2023. (KTLA)

Some Sherman Oaks residents are dealing with a similar problem after learning that a seven-story apartment complex could be approved on their single-family residential block because of an executive directive to fast-track the city’s approval of 100% affordable housing projects that was signed by Mayor Karen Bass.  

Back in Westchester, some residents say they are not against affordable housing and that they’ve proposed alternative sites for the city to upzone and add units to. Their primary concern is getting the planning department to change the current plans.  

“The plan is so bad that it would destroy our community, not because of affordable housing. We want affordable housing. We just want it done responsibly,” Moore said.  

At the Westchester Neighborhood Council meeting, the vote was unanimous to remove duplex and triplex homes from the rezoning maps. That resolution will now go before Councilwoman Traci Park. Affordable housing proposals in California neighborhoods prompt protests

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