The City of Bellflower wants to rezone Hollywood Sports Park - a golf course turned paintball course - into housing. One problem: it's already being targeted as the new maintenance and storage facility for Metro's recently-approved Southeast Gateway Line.

The 22-acre property at 9030 Somerset Boulevard, located just east of Lakewood Boulevard, sits directly north of the Southeast Gateway Line's right-of-way.  The rail line's final environmental impact report shows that the property would be improved with tracks for vehicle storage, repair, and cleaning, among other functions.

Southeast Gateway Line maintenance and storage facility site planMetro

While no current project is imagined for the site, it is currently zoned for open space by the City of Bellflower. The city intends to update the zoning for the property to permit housing on the site, a change which will go toward an amendment to Bellflower's already-approved 2021-2029 Housing Element.

The notice of preparation states that 20.5 acres of the site could be developed with housing at a rate of 100 residential units per acre, with the remaining 1.5 acres left over to open space. After accounting for features such as parking, landscaping, amenities, internal streets, and other infrastructure, the city expects that the site could accommodate up to 1,640 homes.

In an e-mailed statement, Bellflower's Director of Planning Elizabeth C. Oba said that Metro has engaged in discussions about acquiring the property for several years, but has yet to make a formal offer to acquire the land. In 2018, the Bellflower City Council  approved a resolution which, if Metro were to move forward with acquiring the facility, would demand that the agency to prioritize Bellflower residents in hiring for the new facility, set aside 1.5 acres of the site as public open space, and compensate or relocate the site's existing leaseholder.

"Whether Metro proceeds with its planned use or not is not within the City’s control," said Oba. "What is within our control is how we plan for the future of our community.  Our focus has been and continues to be on meeting the needs of Bellflower residents now and for many years to come."

Utility relocation and other advance work on the Southeast Gateway Line is expected to begin later this year.

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