Costco location

The Neighborhood Council LAND USE COMMITTEE is focused on the conditions on the actual Land within the boundaries of our Neighborhood Council.

We are proud that one of our projects has been the study of plans to partially demolish, refurbish, and to develop the interior of the existing large warehouse structures now located on the SouthWest corner of Sherman Way and Tujunga Avenue in North Hollywood. The actual addresses involved are: 11400-11452 Sherman Way, and 7131-7145 Tujunga Avenue in the La Tuna Canyon Planning Area of the City of Los Angeles. The corner land mass is bounded by Sherman Way on the North, with Tujunga Avenue on the East, railroad tracks with the spur on the South.

Costco Business Center will go into refurbishment of the existing 310,991 square-foot warehouse, with office space, and with interior upgrades to fit the business plan for the Business Center.  The Business Center will not be open to the general public.  Business hours will be Monday through Friday, from 7:00AM to 7:00PM. Saturdays the hours are from 7:00AM to 4:00PM. Despite the posted business hours, there will always be work going on the full 24-hours.

Project work begins this year 2016, with completion expected in 2017.  It will be much larger than the local Costco Shopping Stores. The Business Center will be one of twelve Business Centers in the United States. The product inventory will also have some upgraded items that are not for sale in the local Costco Stores. They will cater to businesses such as restaurants and offices. A great percent of the sales will be generated by phone and online orders for products to be sent to locations both near and far from North Hollywood.

Part of the good news is the employment opportunities that will come to our community with the Costco Business Center.  There will be opportunities for some 200 full-time jobs. There will be some 180 part-time jobs available. The good news increases with job opportunities for advancement in the company.  And there will be full health benefits.  It all sounds very good for the economy in our community.

The Land Use Committee entertains many resources of information before making its recommendation to the full board for consideration and a vote.   On November 19, 2015 the full board voted to accept the recommendation of the Land Use Committee to support the Costco project.
The next step was for the Committee Chair to compose a summary letter of the Costco plans and send it to Oliver Netburn, the City Planner on this project. Our letter included some of the reasons for our support.

The City Planning Dept. scheduled a Hearing of the Area Planning Commission which was held on January 5, 2016.  As the Land Use Committee Chair, it was the chair’s duty to attend the hearing and speak for our community and for our Neighborhood Council with its decision of support for the project of the Costco Business Center.  This writer did attend the hearing, and the Planning Deputy Karo Torossian for CD#2, City Council Member, Paul Kerkorian, did speak to support the Costco Business Center.

The Hearing Officer, was Fernando Tovar, the Associate Zoning Administrator.  He listened very carefully to everything that we and the stakeholders had to say on this case. Then he generated a seventeen page letter which stated his Approval for the project with his reasons and findings based on his studies and research.  The process is most interesting and makes all efforts to be business friendly for the applicant, and to have benefits for both the potential full-time and the part-time employees from the community, in our Neighborhood Council area.

A total of some 65,720 square feet of space will be demolished on the South side of the warehouse and delivery docks near the tracks of the railroad spur, to create additional parking space for large delivery trucks to be the loaded and unloaded.

Below is one reason that the Committee considered for the Costco file #ZA-2015-28990 CUB, CU, SPR.  We considered the security lighting around the entire building, and we emphasized the need for lighting on the South side where encampments may be deterred along the railroad spur.

After the demolition of some of the Southern portion of the building, the remaining approximate 144,065 square feet will have interior remodeling to fit the requirements of the Business Centers in the United States.  The on-site existing wholesale wine importer has no connection with Costco and will continue in his specific space.   Costco will not be selling any alcoholic beverages.

Today when you observe the land and buildings that do exist, you also see an unattended amount of wind-blown and settled debris, which might be expected where limited activity occurs.  When Costco completes its work they will reverse the unattended condition with a cleaner parking area, and with the beautification by planting some 61 parkway trees, plus the planted areas in the parking lot.  There may also be changes in the curb cuts for vehicle access.
Below is a photo of the South West corner of the intersection at Sherman Way and Tujunga Avenue where the existing large warehouse structures will become the Costco Business Center. Watch for the results in 2016 and 2017.  Jobs will be available.

All in all, our community looks forward to a great visual and economic improvement in this property, and we look forward to employment opportunities for our residents.

Respectfully Submitted on March 20, 2016

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