At last week’s Santa Monica Planning Commission meeting, Tesla received approval for a conditional use permit to construct the world’s largest V3 Supercharger station.
With the approval, construction of the 62-stall Supercharger station was set to begin in a few months, with the first Tesla owners expected to plug in by the end of the summer.
Now less than a week later, Tesla may have to abandon the project entirely.
At a Santa Monica City Council meeting on March 9, councillors voted to include the Supercharger site at 1401 and 1421-1425 Santa Monica Boulevard in an Emergency Interim Zoning Ordinance. The ordinance prohibits non-residential development for at least 45 days, and could be extended for as long as two years.
With a housing crisis, the city is considering all options to increase residential development, and specifically targeted Tesla and this site to be included in the ordinance when it was not included in the original staff recommended draft.
The same concerns were raised at the Planning Commission meeting last week. It was discussed then how the owner of the site is not interested in residential development and cannot be forced to do so. After three hours of discussion they realized the best option was to let Tesla build on the vacant lot to in part help the city reach its zero-emission goals.
Unfortunately it looks like the city councillors disagree.
You can watch a recording of the meeting below, which starts when the staff report is presented to council.