Trancas Developer Drops Suit Against City of Malibu

Malibu City Hall

A developer who had hoped to build more than 50 condos and 15 houses at Trancas Canyon Road and Pacific Coast Highway has dropped a nearly two-decade-old lawsuit against the City of Malibu.

Proponents have been trying to get different iterations of the project, nicknamed “Trancas Town,” off the ground for 30 years. Before the City of Malibu incorporated in 1991, developer Trancas PCH received tentative permits from L.A. County in 1984 to construct the housing project on 35 acres of land. When the city took over the permitting process in 1991, a longstanding fight erupted between the two parties — as did several lawsuits.

“The Trancas property has long been a symbol of Malibu’s fight for local control,” said City Attorney Christi Hogin. “Property owners are entitled to reasonable use of their property, but the community fought a long battle for cityhood so that the determination of ‘reasonable development’ would be made by the people of Malibu, not by the County.”

This most recent lawsuit was over the city’s 2003 “disapproval” of a subdivision granted to the Trancas PCH owners in the 1980s. Developers were hoping to force the city to accept the 1984 conditions granted by the county.

The suit was voluntarily dropped on Tuesday, Jan. 13.