Los Angeles Mayor Eric Garcetti has tapped Pasadena’s Planning Director Vince Bertoni to head up the city’s planning department, replacing Michael LoGrande who stepped down last month after six years at the helm.
Bertoni returns to L.A.’s planning department after five years as Pasadena’s planning chief, where he oversaw that city’s general plan update. As a deputy planning director in Los Angeles, he oversaw the formation of 16 historic preservation overlay zones, new guidelines for the Broadway Historic District and a Hollywood community plan.
As planning chief, Bertoni will oversee the continued overhaul of L.A.’s antiquated zoning code, the updating of community plans and implementation of the city’s general plan.
“I am honored to lead this department and its talented staff at such an important moment in its history,” Bertoni said. “I look forward to working with stakeholders across the City to strengthen our neighborhoods and build a prosperous future for Los Angeles.”
Bertoni also has held planning posts in the cities of Beverly Hills, Santa Clarita and Malibu and serves as a member of the California Planning Roundtable.
LoGrande stepped down as planning director at the end of last month after six years at the helm and 18 years at the department. During his tenure as director, he oversaw the approval of more than 50,000 residential units and more than 20 mixed-use projects.
But some critics said he was slow to respond to the spread of “mansionization,” or the building of giant homes out of character with surrounding neighborhoods. And the department has come under criticism from local activists for greenlighting major developments in Hollywood.
Nonetheless, LoGrande said he tried to strike a balance. “I have had the privilege to work alongside the dedicated planning staff to guide the transformative growth we have seen in Los Angeles, while protecting the character of our neighborhoods,” he said.