Coastal Commission approves Grover Beach conference center
April 12, 2013
The California Coastal Commission unanimously approved a plan Thursday to construct an 11,000-square-foot conference center and a lodge in Grover Beach near the entrance to the Oceano Dunes. [Tribune]
The project, which Grover Beach officials have discussed for decades, includes the conference center, a 135 to 150-room lodge, boardwalks, concessions and picnic areas between the beach and Highway 1 on a 13.4-acre lot along Grand Avenue. The conference center would be the largest of its kind between Monterey and Santa Barbara.
Grover Beach and the California Department of Parks and Recreation will work together on the project, which is on state-owned land. The project will return to the Grover Beach City Council within six months for consideration and approval.
Although the Coastal Commission approved the plans for the conference center and lodge, it narrowly rejected a request to build an equestrian facility across the street on the south side of Grand Avenue. The commission voted 5-4 to deny an amendment that would allow the city and state parks to construct beach side parking for horse trailers.
Commission staff argued that the area is environmentally sensitive and should remain open space.
Grover Beach and state parks could still construct the parking area on the main project lot, but it would require horses to dodge cars and off-road vehicles when walking to the beach.