A Rezoning Primer

By Dayna Drum | Reporter

  • What does BMO/BHO stand for? Baseline Mansionization Ordinance and Baseline Hillside Ordinance.
  • What do they seek to do? To regulate the bulk of “out-of-scale” homes across the city of Los Angeles.
  • What is the difference between the two ordinances? BHO has specific regulations that impact development in hillside areas, while BMO regulate homes in standard, more level conditions.
  • What does the ordinance regulate? The ordinance is the city’s development standards for homes in single-family zones.
  • What is the background of this ordinance? New regulations began taking form in 2006 to address “out-of-scale development and extensive hillside grading” in the Hollywood Hills. These BMO regulations were adopted in 2008 and were followed by the BHO regulations in 2011. As development increased and expanded, many residents asked their city councilmember to increase the regulations, resulting in City Council asking City Planning to draft amendments to the ordinances.
  • What are Interim Control Ordinances (ICOs)? Some residential areas required an immediate solution to restrict development while a longer-term solution was considered. These restrictions expire in March 2017.
  • What do Palisadians think? Many civic leaders are seeking an exemption to the city code, saying the Palisades has its own traditional protections against McMansions. They warn citywide proposals could drastically reduce home values. Some Alphabet Streets residents want tougher restrictions to protect the character of their neighborhood, although others says it’s a decade too late. Some Marquez Knolls voices want to be treated differently to protect their ocean views.
  • What is re:code LA? This is a drive to rewrite the city’s zoning codes to better reflect the varying neighborhoods. A new variety of options within R1 zones (single-family homes) are being prepared to be tailored to various communities.
  • Do these amendments apply to projects currently obtaining permits? The changes will only apply to projects filed after the effective date of the ordinance.
  • How do I find out which ordinance applies to my home? Search your home address at zimas.lacity.org.
  •  What happens next? The city will invite Palisadians to a public meeting, probably in September, after which officials will draw up a Pacific Palisades map of different neighborhood requirements and present it to city council members. They want the exemption process to run parallel with the BMO ordinances, to become city law next spring.