by Jodi SummersCEQA-Chart-of-Categories

The California Environmental Quality Act, aka CEQA is a statute that requires state and local agencies to identify the significant environmental impacts of their actions and to avoid or mitigate those impacts, if feasible.

CEQA currently measures traffic impacts using the “level of service” metric. In 2017, the method is changing to a “vehicle miles traveled” method.CEQA_Process

The new method may allow developers to reduce their environmental impact by reducing the number of vehicles traveling to and from a project.

“The new direction is called VMT, or ‘vehicle miles traveled,’” attorney Scott Birkey, a partner at Cox, Castle & Nicholson told “This is the direction that the New-apartment-buildings-in-Los-Angelesstate, under some new legislation, has been pushing us to. It is actually a little known secret that there has always been a preference to vehicle miles traveled because it looks at the amount of vehicles traveling for a given area or for a given amount of time. So, [it looks at] how many vehicles are on the road at any given moment. There are all sorts of questions about how to do that modeling. For example, what is the region and how do you put boundaries around the scope of that?”current ceqa eir process

There are a lot of questions still to be answered, before the new rules go into effect. But, the general idea is that if a developer uses VMT as a way of analysis, then they can change the project so that it mitigates traffic impact.

“As it is currently done under CEQA, you have to measure traffic impacts as part of your environmental quality act. We Urban-Apartment-Development-construction-cranes-keyimagehad been evaluating traffic impacts for years now using a ‘level of service’ metric,” notes Birkey. “This metric essential measures the amount of delay that each vehicle experiences at an intersection or a roadway segment.”

Birkey pointed out that the whole idea of waiting at an intersection as the result of a project makes it so that to mitigate those impacts, a developer might be fixing an intersection that is miles away from the project. It was a way of dealing with spillover effects from the project.

playa+vista+real+estateNow it’s all about how many trips a project is generating. It’s a positive paradigm shift, as the new CEQA rules are less about roadway segments miles away from a project and now more about the project itself.

The office of planning and research is still working on the new CEQA guidelines for the implementation of VMT It is not in effect yet and won’t be until they finalize their guidelines, but it is coming and agencies are looking at its implementation.




Leave a Reply

About Jodi Summers

Jodi Summers
SoCal Investment Real Estate Group
Sotheby’s International Realty

Sotheby’s International Realty’s legacy dates back to 1744. Respected as one of the world’s oldest and largest fine art auctioneers, Sotheby’s has a longstanding tradition of bringing together buyers and sellers of fine property. Today, Sotheby’s International Realty boasts nearly 13,000 sales associates, located in more than 660 offices in 49 countries and territories. Broker Jodi Summers is the founder of the SoCal Investment Real Estate Group, a top producing team with Sotheby’s International Realty in the Los Angeles area.

With more than $140,000,000 in listed inventory, Jodi and the SoCal Investment Real Estate Group know finance, rules, regulations, procedures and methods. We are accurate, knowledgeable, timely and aware of how government shapes the cities of Southern California, including Santa Monica, Venice, Culver City, West Hollywood, Beverly Hills and Los Angeles.

A New York native, Jodi grew up working in the family business – marketing, Madison Avenue style. Childhood math quiz questions calculated demographic and psychographic percentages or analyzed the allocation of adverting dollars. Word games were for devising slogans.

“My marketing and communication skills have proven to be a true gift when it comes to promoting real estate,” observes Jodi. “And I am consistently able to get an exceptionally high price per square foot for my sellers.”

Discipline (Jodi holds a Black Belt in Tae Kwon Do), organization, motivation, excellent communication skills and knowing & satisfying the needs of her clients have been her essentials for running a successful business. A passion for investment real estate explains her emphasis in asset-yielding properties.

The City of Santa Monica chose Jodi to be part of the prestigious 9-member Civic Working Group to analyze and offer feedback on the future of the 10.5-acre Santa Monica Civic Auditorium site. Additionally, Jodi is a member of the National Association of Realtors, Beverly Hills + Greater West Side Association of Realtors, Action Apartment Association of Westside income property owners, the Santa Monica Conservancy historic preservation society, the Friends of Sunset Park community group, the Real Estate Investors Club L.A., the American Solar Energy Society, Sierra Club, California Parks Association and the Culver City Rock & Mineral Club. She is currently the Communications Chair for the Ocean Park Association in Santa Monica, and a partner in Save the Civic – a community group involved with the City in the adaptive reuse of the Santa Monica Civic Auditorium and adjacent area.

An honors graduate from the Walter Cronkite School of Journalism at Arizona State University, Jodi moved to California in the mid-’90s to achieve her goal of living by the beach with a hibiscus bush in her yard.

She has thrived as an entrepreneur in the entertainment, media and marketing industries. She has three books in publication with Allworth Press – The Interactive Music Handbook, Making and Marketing Music and Moving Up In the Music Business. Making and Marketing Music is in second edition. Check out her work on

Find out more about Jodi Summers through her social networks –
Linked In:

Our websites + blogs + brands include:


Fascinating Information, Government, Green, New Developments, Trends, Uncategorized