Chapter 17.26
C1, C2 AND C3 COMMERCIAL ZONES

Sections:

17.26.010    General provisions.

17.26.020    Specific purposes.

17.26.030    C-1, C-2 and C-3 land use regulations.

17.26.040    Similar use permitted.

17.26.050    Standards and limitations.

17.26.060    Restaurants with on-sale alcoholic beverages limited to beer and wine, closing at 10:00 p.m. or earlier--Standards and limitations.

17.26.070    Tattoo/body piercing studios--Standards and limitations.

17.26.010 General provisions.

In the C-zones, no building shall be erected, constructed, reconstructed, structurally altered, or shall any building or land be used for any purpose except as hereinafter specifically provided and allowed by this chapter. (Prior code Appx. A, § 8-1)

17.26.020 Specific purposes.

A. In addition to the general purposes listed in Chapter 17.02 the specific purposes of the commercial zones are to:

1. Provide appropriately located areas consistent with the general plan for a full range of office, retail commercial, and service commercial uses needed by residents of, and visitors to, the city and region;

2. Strengthen the city’s economic base, and also protect small businesses that serve city residents;

3. Create suitable environments for various types of commercial and compatible residential uses, and protect them from the adverse effects of inharmonious uses;

4. Minimize the impact of commercial development on adjacent residential districts;

5. Ensure that the appearance and effects of commercial building and uses are harmonious with the character of the area in which they are located;

6. Ensure the provision of adequate off-street parking and loading facilities;

7. Provide sites for public and semi-public uses needed to complement commercial development or compatible with a commercial environment;

B. The additional purposes of each zone are as follows:

1. C-1 Neighborhood Commercial Zone. To provide sites for a mix of small local businesses appropriate for, and serving the daily needs of nearby residential neighborhoods; while establishing land use regulations that prevent significant adverse effects on abutting residential uses.

2. C-2 Downtown Commercial Zone. To provide opportunities for a limited range of office, retail, and service commercial uses specifically appropriate for the scale and character of the downtown -- a resident and visitor serving pedestrian-oriented shopping/entertainment district.

3. C-3 General Commercial Zone. To provide opportunities for the full range of office, retail, and service businesses deemed suitable for the city, and appropriate for the Pacific Coast Highway and Aviation Boulevard commercial corridors, including business not appropriate for other zones because they attract heavy vehicular traffic or have specific adverse impacts. (Ord. 95-1130 §1, 1995: prior code § 8-2)

17.26.030 C-1, C-2 and C-3 land use regulations.

In the following matrix, the letter "P" designates use classifications permitted in commercial zones. The letter "U" designates use classifications permitted by approval of a conditional use permit. Use classification not listed are prohibited. Section numbers listed under "see section" reference additional regulations located elsewhere in the zoning ordinance or this code. For definition of the listed uses see Section 17.04.060.

 

C-1, C-2 and C-3 ZONES, LAND USE REGULATIONS

 

P = Permitted

 

- = Not Permitted

 

U = C.U.P. Required (See Chapter 17.40)

USES

C1

C2

C3

See Section

Adult businesses

-

-

U

17.40.050

Adult paraphernalia, X-rated uses and materials, limited to no more than 20% of stock-in-trade

U

U

U

17.40.060

Alcohol beverage establishments, on-sale

-

U

U

17.40.080

Alcoholic beverage establishment, on-sale (excluding restaurant with on-sale alcoholic beverages limited to beer and wine, closing at 10:00 p.m. or earlier)

-

U

U

17.40.080

Alcohol beverage establishment, off-sale (closing at 11:00 p.m. or earlier)

P

P

P

 

Alcohol beverage establishment, off-sale (open between 11:01 p.m. and 2:00 a.m.)

U

U

U

17.40.090

Animal hospitals

-

-

P

 

Aquariums, sales and supplies of marine life

P

P

P

 

Art/antiques/curios gallery or shop

P

P

P

 

Assembly halls

-

U

U

17.40

Audio/video equipment and supplies, sales and repair

P

P

P

 

Bakery

P

P

P

 

Banks and financial institutions

-

P

P

 

Barber/beauty shop

P

P

P

 

Billiard or pool halls

-

P

P

 

Books/news/magazines, sales

P

P

P

 

Bowling alley

-

-

P

 

Brick and stone (ornamental)

-

-

P

 

Bus station, not including terminal facilities

-

-

P

 

Cannabis delivery

-

-

-

17.42.110

Catering business

-

-

P

 

Clinic, dental and/or medical

P

P

P

 

Clothing and wearing apparel sales and service

P

P

P

 

Clubs, private

-

P

P

 

Commercial cannabis activities

-

-

-

17.42.110

Communication facility

-

-

U

17.40.020

Computer and Internet access center

 

 

U

17.40.020

Copying and printing services and supplies

P

P

P

 

Cultivation of cannabis or medical marijuana

-

-

-

17.42.110

Dancing, customer

-

P

P

 

Day nursery, preschool

U

U

U

17.40.110

Department stores

-

P

P

 

Detective agency

P

P

P

 

Drugstore

P

P

P

 

Emergency shelters

-

-

P

17.40.220

Entertainment, limited live

P

P

P

17.42.190

Entertainment, live

-

U

U

17.40.020

Entertainment, special performances

-

U*

U*

 

Equipment (household tools and lawn/garden equipment including small engines) rental, and repair, other than street vehicles

-

-

P

 

Florist or plant shop

P

P

P

 

Food and beverage market (maximum 4,000 square feet floor area)

P

P

P

 

Fortune tellers, psychics and astrologers

-

-

P

 

Furniture/furnishings, sales and display

-

P

P

 

Garden equipment, small, hand-operated, sales and rentals

-

P

P

 

Gun shop

-

-

P

 

Gymnasium/health and fitness center

-

P

P

 

Hardware/home improvement store

-

P

P

 

Hobby and craft supplies and service

P

P

P

 

Hospitals, general, psychiatric out-patient only

-

-

U

17.40.020

Hotels, motels

-

P

P

 

Household appliances/office equipment, sales and repair

-

P

P

 

Instruments (professional and/or scientific), sales

P

P

P

 

Interior decorating studio, store or shop

P

P

P

 

Laboratories

-

P

P

 

Laundry business and dry-cleaning (including self-service)

P

P

P

 

Locksmith business

P

P

P

 

Lumberyard, retail

-

-

P

 

Massage therapy business

-

U

U

17.40.160

Medical marijuana dispensaries

-

-

-

17.42.110

Messenger service

P

P

P

 

Monuments

-

-

P

 

Motor vehicles and equipment, sales and service (including motorcycles, boats, non-tractor trucks, RVs)

 

 

 

 

Sales/rental, new or used

-

-

U

17.40.202

General repair, service, installation of parts and accessories

-

-

U

17.40.020

Body repair and painting

-

-

U

17.40.020

Service station

 

 

U

17.40.030

Parts and accessories, retail sales

-

P

P

 

Car washes (self-service car wash)

-

-

U

17.40.030

Vehicle storage

-

-

U

17.40.020

Musical instruments, retail and repair

-

P

P

 

Nurseries

-

-

U

17.40.020

Offices, general

P

P

P

 

Outdoor dining (accessory to food establishments on public right-of-way)

P

P

P

17.26.050(B)(5)

12.16.090

Outdoor merchandise display, temporary outside dining, in conjunction with special event

U*

U*

U*

17.26.050(D)

Outdoor retail sales/display areas (accessory to establishments on Pier Avenue public right-of-way--includes Loreto Plaza)

-

P

-

17.26.050(B)(7)

12.16.100

Outdoor seating, limited (accessory to food establishments on private property)

P

P

P

17.26.050(B)(6)

Parade, circus or carnival

-

U*

U*

 

Parcel delivery terminal

-

-

P

 

Parking lots and/or structures

P

P

P

 

Pet grooming, no overnight kennels

 

P

P

 

Pet stores, including sale of pets

-

-

P

 

Photo engraving business

-

-

P

 

Photography (equipment sales and service, film processing, studio)

P

P

P

 

Printing and or publishing business, commercial

-

P

P

 

Recycling, large or small collection facility

-

-

U

17.40.130, 17.40.140

Residence; residential uses above ground floor commercial use(s), including condominium developments

U

-

-

17.40.020

Restaurant, with drive-in, or drive-thru window, or with outdoor walk-up window on public right of way

-

U

U

17.40.020

Restaurant with on-sale alcoholic beverages limited to beer and wine, closing at 10:00 p.m. or earlier.

P

P

P

17.26.060

Restaurant with on-sale alcoholic beverages limited to beer and wine, closing later than 10:00 p.m.

U

U

U

17.40.080

Restaurant/cafe

P

P

P

 

Restaurant/cafe with beer and wine (on-sale alcohol beverage establishment)

U

U

U

17.40.080

Reverse vending machine(s)

U

U

U

17.40.120

Secondhand merchandise, retail sales

-

P

P

 

Short-term vacation rental

-

P

P

17.40.230

Single room occupancy facility (more than six units)

-

-

U

17.42.090

Snack bar/snack shop

P

P

P

 

Sporting/recreational equipment sales, service, and rental

P

P

P

 

Supermarkets

-

P

P

 

Surfboard manufacturing

-

-

U

17.40.020

Tattoo/body piercing studios

-

P

P

17.26.070

Ticket broker/sales

-

P

P

 

Tobacco store

P

P

P

 

Toy store

P

P

P

 

Upholstering shop

-

-

P

 

Wedding chapel, commercial

-

-

P

 

Wireless communication facility

U

U

U

 

Youth hostel

-

U

U

17.40.150

*Allowed by special permit by city council on public streets/right-of-way, pursuant to Section 12.12.070, and permitted by right on private property in conjunction with such a special permit.

(Ord. 19-1395 §2, 2019; Ord. 18-1388 §4, 2018; Ord. 17-1378 §3, 2017; Ord. 16-1371 §1.2, 2016; Ord. 16-1362 §2, 2016; Ord. 15-1349 §2, 2015; Ord. 14-1345 §1, 2014; Ord. 13-1342 §4, 2013; Ord. 12-1334 §1, 2012; Ord. 12-1333 §5, 2012; Ord. 10-1310 §1, 2010; Ord. 10-1313 §3, 2010; Ord. 09-1298, §§2, 3, 2009; Ord. 08-1292 §1, 2008; Ord. 06-1272 §5, 2006; Ord. 03-1232 §3, 2003; Ord. 01-1214 §4(2), 2001; Ord. 97-1174 §1, 1997; Ord. 96-1157 §1, 1996: Ord. 95-1130 §2, 1995: Ord. 94-1118 §1, 1995: prior code Appx. A, § 8-3)

17.26.040 Similar use permitted.

When a use is not specifically listed in this chapter, it shall be understood that the use is prohibited unless it is determined by the community development director that the use is similar to and not more objectionable than other uses listed.

It is further recognized that every conceivable use cannot be identified in this chapter, and anticipating that new uses will arise over time, this section authorizes the community development director to compare a proposed use and measure it against those listed for determining similarity. The director’s determination shall not be final until confirmed by the city council as a consent calendar item on the council agenda following the director’s determination.

In determination similarity the director shall make all of the following findings:

A. The proposed use shall meet the intent of, and be consistent with the goals, objectives and policies of the general plan;

B. The proposed use shall meet the stated purpose and general intent of the zone in which the use is proposed to be located;

C. The proposed use shall not adversely impact the public health, safety and general welfare of the city’s residents; and

D. The proposed use shall share characteristics common with, and not be of greater intensity, density or generate more environmental impact, than those uses listed in the zone in which it is to be located. (Ord. 95-1130 §3, 1995: prior code Appx. A, § 8-4)

17.26.050 Standards and limitations.

Every use permitted or maintained in C zones shall be subject to the following:

A. Parking. Parking shall be provided as specified by Chapter 17.44.

B. Enclosures. All uses shall be conducted wholly within a building enclosed on all sides, except for the following:

1. Outdoor uses may be permitted by conditional use permit for uses listed as stated in the permitted use list;

2. Commercial parking lot;

3. Uses incidental to a use conducted primarily within a building located on the premises; provided, that such incidental uses are not conducted in whole or in part on sidewalks, public ways or within any required front or rear yard; and provided, further, that such incidental uses are of a type which cannot be economically or practically conducted within buildings. Where incidental uses are not conducted within a building, no part of the area devoted to the incidental uses shall be considered as part of the required parking facilities. All outdoor storage or activities shall be substantially screened from public visibility, public streets, parks or other public places, and properties;

4. Temporary outdoor merchandise display and outside dining in conjunction with a temporary outdoor event such as a sidewalk sale, authorized by the city council by special permit as set forth in Section 12.12.070.

5. Outdoor dining or seating located adjacent to a food establishment, authorized by an encroachment permit for use of the public right-of-way obtained pursuant to Section 12.16.090. Deviation from the standards in Section 12.16.090 may be allowed pursuant to a conditional use permit, issued in compliance with Chapter 17.40.

6. Limited outdoor seating for the purposes of food consumption, accessory to food establishments on private property, shall be allowed with approval of a permit from the community development department, subject to the standards and limitations in this subsection. Food establishments include snack shops, restaurants, food and beverage markets, supermarkets, bakeries, or similar establishments that offer food or beverages, as determined by the community development director.

a. Administrative Permit Required.

i.  Prior to the establishment of any limited outdoor seating area accessory to any food establishments on private property, an administrative permit shall be required pursuant to Chapter 17.55 except as otherwise stated in this section. An application shall be filed with the community development department in writing upon a form furnished by the department. The application shall include a site plan and drawings and information showing location, furnishings and seating arrangement in sufficient detail to demonstrate the compliance with this section, accompanied by a fee set by resolution of the city council.

ii. The community development director may issue the administrative permit only after determining that the request complies with the standards and provisions of this section and any other requirements applicable to the use set forth in the Municipal Code; provided, that where limited outdoor seating is comprised of seating on private property and the public right-of-way, the standards applicable to limited outdoor seating on the public right-of-way in Section 12.16.090(C) shall govern on the private property.

iii. The permit shall lapse, and be of no force and effect, and a new administrative permit shall be required for outdoor seating whenever there is a change in food establishment ownership, change in the nature or scope of the business, the permitted food establishment does not operate for a period of more than six (6) months, or the community development director determines, based on substantial evidence, that the food establishment operation no longer meets the standards set forth in subsection (B)(6)(b) of this section.

b. Standards and Limitations. The location, design and operation of the limited outdoor seating area shall comply with all of the following:

i. Outdoor seating shall be incidental and accessory to food establishments for patrons of the food establishment to consume food or beverages purchased during the hours that food or beverages are offered for sale, but not to exceed 7:00 a.m. to 11:00 p.m. in the C-3 zone and zones that allow C-2 uses, or 7:00 a.m. to 10:00 p.m. in the other zones where this use is permitted. Employee break areas physically separated and restricted from public use are regulated by subsection (B)(3) of this section.

ii. The outdoor seating area authorized by this subsection (B)(6) shall not exceed a total of two hundred (200) square feet of floor area per business or tenant space, and shall not contain more than one (1) seat per fifteen (15) square feet of area. Where the outdoor seating area is located on both private property and the public right-of-way, the cumulative outdoor seating area shall not exceed two hundred (200) square feet of floor area and shall not contain more than one (1) seat per fifteen (15) square feet of area. Seating shall not be reserved, and waiter/waitress table service shall not be provided. Additional parking is not required.

iii. The outdoor seating area shall be located proximate to the business providing the seating, such as adjacent to the building, within courtyards, or on balconies or decks, excluding any roof deck. Outdoor seating areas shall not be arranged so as to create food courts. Outdoor seating areas shall not reduce, be located within, or damage any required landscaped area.

iv. Alcoholic beverages shall not be offered, sold or consumed within the outdoor seating area.

v. No entertainment, music, speakers, televisions, or audio or visual media of any type, whether amplified or unamplified, shall be provided within the outdoor seating area or situated so as to be clearly visible to the outdoor seating area.

vi. The location and use of the outdoor seating area shall not obstruct the movement of pedestrians, goods or vehicles; required parking spaces; driveways or parking aisles; entrances; legal signs; utilities or other improvements. A minimum four (4) foot wide pedestrian path shall be maintained, unless otherwise required by law. When located adjacent to parking spaces, driveways or parking lot aisles, a physical barrier such as curb or railing shall be provided.

vii. Furnishings shall be strictly limited to chairs, benches and tables, and single pole table umbrellas designed for outdoor use. Extraneous objects, such as portable shade canopies, podiums, heat lamps, and service objects, are not allowed. All furnishings and barriers shall be maintained free of appendages or conditions that pose a hazard to pedestrians and vehicles.

viii. All furnishings shall be maintained in good condition at all times. The area shall be supplied adequate solid waste management containers and maintained in a neat and clean manner, free of litter and graffiti, at all times.

ix. Any lighting provided for the use shall be extinguished no later than 11:00 p.m. in the C-3 zone and zones that allow C-3 uses, or 7:00 a.m. to 10:00 p.m. in the other zones where this use is permitted, and shall be high-efficiency, the minimum intensity necessary, fully shielded (full cutoff) and down cast (emitting no light above the horizontal plane of the fixture), not create glare or spill beyond the property lines, and the lamp bulb shall not be directly visible from within any residential unit.

x. The use of water for cleaning the area shall conform to Chapter 8.56, Water Conservation and Drought Management Plan, and shall be minimized and any runoff generated shall drain to the sewer system only and shall under no circumstances drain to the stormwater system.

xi. Noise emanating from the property shall be within the limitations prescribed by Chapter 8.24 and shall not create a nuisance to surrounding residential neighborhoods, and/or commercial establishments. The outdoor seating area shall not adversely affect the welfare of the residents or commercial establishments nearby.

xii. The design and use of the outdoor seating area shall conform to all building, fire, zoning, health and safety and other requirements of the Municipal Code and all other requirements of law.

c. Conditional Use Permit. Any deviation from the standards listed in this subsection shall require a conditional use permit in compliance with Chapter 17.40.

7. Outdoor retail sales/displays located adjacent to a retail establishment, authorized by an encroachment permit for use of the public right-of-way obtained pursuant to Section 12.16.100. Deviation from the standards in Section 12.16.100 may be allowed pursuant to a conditional use permit, issued in compliance with Chapter 17.40.

C. Merchandise. No merchandise shall be sold other than at retail. Sale of repossessed merchandise or secondhand merchandise taken in by the seller as a trade-in on new merchandise is permissible, provided that such sales are conducted on the premises where such merchandise was originally sold, or any successor locations.

D. Signs. Signs for this section are regulated by Section 17.50.140.

E. Building Height.

1. In the C-1 zone, any building may have a maximum height of thirty (30) feet.

2. In the C-2 zone, no building shall exceed a maximum height of thirty (30) feet.

3. In the C-3 zone, no building shall exceed a maximum height of thirty-five (35) feet.

F. Front Yard Setback. No lot need provide a front yard except as may be required by a precise plan.

G. Alley Setback. Buildings shall conform with Section 17.44.130.

H. Rear and Side Yard Setback Adjacent to Residential Zones.

1. C-3 Zone. A minimum rear and/or side yard setback of eight feet shall be provided, and an additional two feet of setback shall be provided for each story over the first story for structures that abut residential zones, except where public rights-of-way, twenty (20) feet or greater in width, separate the commercial zone from the residential zone.

2. C-1 and C-2 Zones. A minimum rear and/or side yard setback of five feet shall be provided, except where public rights-of-way twenty (20) feet or greater in width, separate the commercial zone from the residential zone.

3. Existing Buildings. Existing commercial buildings that do not comply with the above setback requirement adjacent to residential zones shall not be considered "nonconforming buildings" under the terms of Chapter 17.52. Therefore, such buildings may be remodeled or expanded as long as any new constructions conforms with the above setback requirements.

I. Landscaping Adjacent to Residential Zones. The required rear and/or side yard area shall be landscaped and provided with an automatic watering system. Size, quantity and type of landscaping shall be subject to review and approval by the planning director. Landscaping shall be appropriately maintained, trimmed and void of weeds. (Ord. 15-1349 §3, 2015; Ord. 14-1345 §2, 2014; Ord. 12-1333 §5, 2012; Ord. 97-1171 §1, 1997; Ord. 94-1115 §1, 1994; Ord. 94-1100 §2, 1994; prior code Appx. A, § 8-5)

17.26.060 Restaurants with on-sale alcoholic beverages limited to beer and wine, closing at 10:00 p.m. or earlier-- Standards and limitations.

Restaurants with on-sale alcoholic beverages limited to beer and wine that close at 10:00 p.m. or earlier, pursuant to the list of permitted uses in Section 17.26.030, shall be subject to the following:

A. Alcoholic beverage service and its consumption shall be limited to those areas for said use designated on a floor plan and seating plan approved by the community development director, including compliance with the following:

1. No stand-up bar area shall be located within the area designated for alcoholic beverage service and its consumption on the approved floor plan and seating plan.

2. Not more than two (2) televisions, electronic, video or similar displays screens shall be located within or visible from any area designated for alcoholic beverage service and its consumption on the approved floor plan and seating plan.

3. The establishment shall demonstrate compliance with the requirements for food facilities with on-sale alcoholic beverages found at Chapter 8.04, including the provision of adequate toilet facilities.

B. The establishment shall obtain a business license appropriate to the intended use pursuant to Chapter 5.04. No establishment classified as a "snack bar or snack shop" pursuant to Section 17.04.050 shall be eligible to obtain a business license for an establishment that sells, offers to sell, or serves alcoholic beverages. (Ord. 09-1298 §4, 2009)

17.26.070 Tattoo/body piercing studios – Standards and limitations.

Every tattoo/body piercing studio shall be subject to the following in addition to all other requirements of law:

A. The exterior walls of any establishment in the C-2 zone shall be located more than one thousand (1,000) feet from the exterior walls of any other tattoo/body piercing establishment and the exterior walls of any establishment in the C-3 zone or zone that allows C-3 uses shall be located more than one thousand five hundred (1,500) feet from the exterior walls of any other tattoo/body piercing establishment.

B. The operator of the tattoo/body piercing establishment shall obtain and maintain in compliance all permits required by the County of Los Angeles, Department of Public Heath.

C. Tattoo/body piercing establishments shall not operate between the hours of 10:00 p.m. and 10:00 a.m.

D. Live animals, except for service animals, shall not be allowed on the premises.

E. Once established, tattoo/body piercing establishments shall not be permitted to expand into another tenant space or building or otherwise on the site or any contiguous site, or to establish additional locations within the city.

F. Temporary or mobile establishments or events are not authorized by this section. (Ord. 10-1313 §4, 2010)