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Voice Your Concerns for the Proposed Village at Westfield Topanga

Mall developer Westfield is proposing a $450 million complex between its Topanga and Promenade Malls that is spread out over 31 acres. This Wednesday at 3 p.m. at the Warner Center Marriott, there will be a public hearing whereby you have the opportunity to voice your concerns and view the environmental impact from Planning Department officials. 
If approved, this project will be completed sometime between 2013 and 2016 which will include a 275 room hotel, 278,985 sqft of retail, 285,000 sqft of office space, a grocery store, movie theater, community building, six acres of open space and walkways, and a Costco (which may shut down the Canoga Park branch). Additionally, the new complex is expected to generate 3,000 construction jobs, 4,000 permanent positions, add $640 million to the local economy, and bring in $9.4 million in city tax revenue. 

I had discussed this project before in the BTTF series for the Promenade Mall at Woodland Hills. At that time, I was unaware of a proposal by Pratt & Whitney to convert their Rocketdyne site (formerly owned by Boeing) into a 16 story hotel and 4,000 multifamily housing units. So while converting that dump in between the Topanga and Promenade malls into something usable, I cant help but ask, is this sustainable? Consider the following:
  1. There is already an excess amount of housing units on the market that will take years to clear out,
  2. There are plenty of shops to visit between the recently remodeled Topanga, Promenade, and Fallbrook malls notwithstanding the increased competition from the online world and the numerous mom and pop shops.
  3. In terms of hotels, there is already the Marriot and the Hilton, Holiday Inn (on Ventura Blvd), and other hotel chains in the West Valley.
So I have some doubts on the actual demand for all this new complex especially in these difficult economic times. Maybe this site becomes viable but it comes at the expense of taking away business from other Mom and Pop shops and possibly the Promenade and Fallbrook malls. Also add in the traffic nightmare (especially if the Rocketdyne site gets converted to housing) and maybe this entire site becomes avoided, Christmas is bad as it is right now. Hopefully they extend the Orange Line to this area which currently starts/ends at the Promenade Mall.

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Marty Mcfly

Anything and everything about the San Fernando Valley. This blog will take you back in time when the valley was covered with dirt and orange groves to a leader in the space race to its current status as America's suburb. Come along and join me on this adventure, I guarantee you have been influenced/impacted by the San Fernando Valley in one form or another even if you have never visited or heard of the SFV.

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