Optometrist gets OK to relocate

NORWALK - A local optometrist received permission from the Norwalk Planning Commission on Wednesday to relocate his office to a new location despite a possible shortage of parking spaces.Dr. Lowell Smith's office is currently at 11821 Imperial Hwy. but must relocate due to an expansion of the 5 Freeway. Smith chose to move his business just down the street into a multi-office building at 11936 Imperial Hwy. Smith's optometry practice would replace a unit previously occupied by an escrow company. City codes, however, show the property would require 39 parking spaces and only 28 are available. Smith hired a private company to conduct a traffic study, which counted only seven vehicles in the parking lot on two weekdays from 10 a.m. to 5 p.m. Norwalk officials conducted their own study and counted a maximum of 12 vehicles. "Although staff's observations were higher than those indicated in the parking study, there was still an availability of 16 parking spaces," city planners wrote in a report. Norwalk officials recommended the optometry office's approval, saying it would "provide a health service to the community" that is not expected to create parking problems.

********** Published: March 15, 2012 - Volume 10 - Issue 48