New Earthquake Fault Maps Could Restrict Development on Some of SoCal’s Most Expensive Real Estate

Officials on Thursday released new draft maps showing the locations of earthquake faults in Santa Monica, Beverly Hills and the Westside, raising the prospect of development restrictions in areas directly above the fissures.

Map of newly drawn earthquake faults. (Credit: Raoul Rañoa / Los Angeles Times)

The earthquake faults run along some of Southern California’s most expensive real estate, covering such tony neighborhoods as Brentwood and Pacific Palisades as well as Century City, Westwood and other premium business centers.

The long-awaited maps — which include new boundaries for the Santa Monica, Hollywood and Newport-Inglewood faults — are part of a new effort by the state to locate fault lines so that new buildings are not constructed on top of them.

“It is important to not build on faults,” said Tim Dawson, senior engineering geologist for the California Geological Survey. “Building foundations will tend to break when the earth moves beneath them, damaging the building in the process.”

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