Reaching a landmark agreement after years of negotiation, the Redondo Beach City Council and Redondo Beach Unified School District Board celebrated Tuesday night with glasses of Martinelli’s and a group photo.
The upshot of the historic deal will be a new police station for Redondo Beach at 200 N. Pacific Coast Highway, which is in close proximity to City Hall and already has police communication infrastructure. For some time the city has been seeking an alternative site for its 50-year-old, deteriorating police station. The new station is expected to be built within the next five years.
At a joint council and school board meeting Tuesday, all on the dais agreed to a “mutually beneficial” land swap in which the city gains 200 N. PCH – a building on the same block as Redondo Union High School that currently houses the Chamber of Commerce and the Police Department’s detective’s bureau – and gives up a portion (3.17 acres) of the former Franklin School site on 801 Inglewood Ave.
In 1986, the school board leased the Franklin School site to the city based on declining enrollments; now the property accommodates a community center, preschool, and the Redondo Beach Playhouse.
The park portion of the Franklin site (3.86 acres) will remain with the city and will remain a park.
Tuesday’s land swap results in two 99-year leases (for 200 N. PCH and Franklin Park) for the city. The school district gets a $1 million up-front payment and a lease for a portion of the Franklin School site.
The school district will also gain 75 parking spaces in the lot of the new police station, increasing Redondo Union High parking by 41 spaces. Seventy-five shared spaces will be earmarked for both the city and the school board, resulting in 116 extra spaces for special events like graduation ceremonies.