Chapter 3 - Land Use


Generally, the neighborhood districts, community centers, and some regional centers occur as clustered development along the City's arterial corridors. The Framework Element intends to enhance the connecting spaces that lie between these areas, and that traditionally have been zoned for commercial uses, in three ways: (1) retention for highway-oriented commercial uses, (2) intensification of low-intensity or marginally viable commercial areas with existing or planned major bus or rail transit facilities for new commercial development and/or structures that integrate commercial and housing development, and (3) re-use of corridors that are characterized by a prevailing mix of marginal or obsolete commercial uses and housing for new multi-family residential units.

In the first case, development is to occur in accordance with the "General Commercial" policies discussed in the preceding section.

In the second and third cases, where the corridors are appropriate for a mix of housing and commercial, the community plans should designate the areas as mixed-use boulevards. Mixed use is encouraged along mixed-use boulevards at a scale, density, and height of development compatible with the nearby residential neighborhoods. Generally, different types of mixed-use boulevards will fall within a range of floor area ratios from 1.5:1 up to 4:1 and be generally characterized by one- and two-story commercial structures, up to three- to six-story mixed use buildings between centers and higher buildings within centers. Mixed-use boulevards and served by a variety of transportation facilities.

In the second case above, the intent of a mixed-use designation is to extend surrounding residential communities and supporting services into the boulevards. Community and neighborhood commercial uses, public services, cultural facilities, school classrooms, and similar facilities could be integrated in mixed-use structures and sites that would be located within walking distance of surrounding residential neighborhoods and accessible from the boulevard's public transit. Buildings would be located along the sidewalk frontages and contain uses that would promote pedestrian activity.

Mixed-use structures (retail and housing) in boulevard Inclusion of community center and mixed-uses in boulevard

In the third case, multi-family housing would occur at mid-block locations between commercial or mixed-use nodes that would be developed at the principal intersections. While a number of boulevard locations are identified on the Land Use Diagram, this option should also be considered for areas designated as "Boulevard-Mixed Use," subject to further community input when community plans are amended. Housing development in these areas would reduce the need to intensify mixed-density neighborhoods that are presently zoned for intensification of multi-family development.

A network of boulevards that balance community needs and economic objectives with transportation functions and complement adjacent residential neighborhoods.

Objective 3.13

Provide opportunities for the development of mixed-use boulevards where existing or planned major transit facilities are located and which are characterized by low-intensity or marginally viable commercial uses with commercial development and structures that integrate commercial, housing, and/or public service uses.

Uses and Density

Encourage the development of commercial uses and structures that integrate housing units with commercial uses in areas designated as "Boulevard-Mixed Use" in accordance with Tables 3-1 and 3-8. The range and density/intensity of uses permitted in any area shall be identified in the community plans. (P1, P18)

Table 3-8

Land Use Designation

Corresponding Zones

Boulevard-Mixed Use

CR, C1, C1.5, C2, C4, [Q]C2

Example of mixed-use development, integrating housing with commercial uses (Venice Renaissance)



Allow boulevards designated for mixed uses to be differentiated into sub-areas that may individually accommodate: (1) sites developed exclusively for commercial uses, (2) structures that integrate housing with commercial uses, (3) sites that contain a mix of free-standing commercial and housing, and (4) sites developed exclusively for multi-family housing. The determination of the appropriate differentiation shall be accomplished by the community plans in consideration of the following:

a. Parcel depth and relationship to adjacent uses;

b. Adjacency to multi-family residential neighborhoods;

c. Location on a major bus or funded rail transit route;

d. Existence of existing mixed uses; and/or

e. Condition and economic value of existing structures (e.g., prevalence of dilapidation and/or economically obsolete commercial uses). (P1, P18)


Encourage the inclusion of public service uses (e.g., day and elder care, community meeting rooms, and recreational facilities), school classrooms, cultural facilities (museums and libraries), and similar uses in mixed-use structures. (P1, P18, P22, P25)

Access to mixed-use boulevard and community facility from surrounding residential neighborhood

Design and Development
3.13.4 Provide adequate transitions where commercial and residential uses are located adjacent to one another. (P1, P18, P24)
3.13.5 Support the development of recreational and small parks in areas developed with mixed-use structures. (P2, P24)
3.13.6 Design multi-family residential units to minimize the impacts of traffic and noise and incorporate recreational and open space amenities to support the needs of the residents. (P1, P18, P24)

Return to General Commercial Areas | Chapter Contents | Advance to Industrial