City of Santa Monica

Staff Report

Approval of Modification to Windward Lease Agreement to allow a Covenant to be recorded on City-Owned Property


Department:Economic Development Division, Housing and Economic DevelopmentSponsors:
Category:03. Consent Calendar

Recommended Action

Recommended Action
Staff recommends that the City Council:

1.     Authorize the City Manager to negotiate and execute a seventh amendment to the Windward School lease agreement to allow a covenant to be recorded on City-owned property and require its removal at the time of lease termination.

2.     Authorize the City Manager to sign, on behalf of the City as property owner, the covenant and all related documents.


Staff Report Body


Since 1983, the City has leased 7.26 acres of City-owned property at Sawtelle Boulevard and Palms Boulevard in Los Angeles to Windward School (Windward). The City originally acquired the property in connection with water resources at the site. The lease agreement has been modified multiple times to reflect Windward’s continued development of the site.  In July 2018, Windward and the City executed a sixth lease amendment that allowed the school to submit an application to the City of Los Angeles for entitlements to update the original Master Plan approved in 1999. After filing the application, Windward made additional updates to the project plans and project description to recognize increased enrollment and modified phasing of future improvements. The City of Los Angeles requires the City of Santa Monica’s signature, as property owner, on a covenant acknowledging and agreeing with all terms and conditions of the application approval.  The recommended lease amendment would authorize the City Manager to sign the covenant and allow the updated project plans and project description to be approved by the City of Los Angeles.



Windward is a private, college-preparatory school serving grades 7 through 12. Windward’s campus is partially located on the City-owned Charnock Well property, the site of active water wells in the Charnock Groundwater Basin used to support Santa Monica’s water needs. The lease authorizes Windward to use the leasehold for school, recreational, and educational purposes, subject to the primary water use by the City.  The lease, which expires on June 30, 2055, includes a shared-use provision with respect to Windward’s recreational facilities and playfields on the leasehold premises and on adjacent property owned by Windward.


In 2018, Windward informed the City that the second phase of improvements proposed in the 1999 Master Plan was no longer compatible with the school’s needs and long-term vision.  As a result, Windward advised staff of their intention to submit an application to the City of Los Angeles to update the 1999 Master Plan. 

On July 24, 2018, Council authorized a sixth amendment to the lease to accommodate the changes and modify the provisions of the shared use of school facilities. On August 1, 2018, Windward submitted its Application to the City of Los Angeles modifying the unbuilt second phase of the Master Plan to upgrade and expand existing classrooms and educational facilities.  After filing its application, Windward engaged in further value engineering, resulting in updated project plans and an updated project description which involved repurposing existing buildings and using modular classrooms until the permanent facilities are constructed. The updates were submitted to the City of Los Angeles in October 2018. Windward also submitted Transportation Demand Management measures to the City of Los Angeles in lieu of phased increases in student enrollment. 


As a condition of project approval, Windward is required to execute and record a covenant agreeing to comply with all terms and conditions of the project’s approval.  As the City of Santa Monica is the fee owner of a portion of the land upon which Windward’s improvements are located, the City is required to sign and execute the covenant (Attachment A) in order to effectuate the City of Los Angeles’ approval.  The proposed seventh lease amendment recognizes the City’s execution of the covenant and reaffirms that none of the campus improvements proposed by Windward will impact, interfere, or adversely affect the water-production facilities that are the City’s primary use for the site. The proposed amendment further memorializes Windward’s commitment that the campus improvements will not impact, interfere, or adversely affect the City’s right to the shared-use facilities pursuant to the lease.


Past Council Actions


Meeting Date


11/14/89 (attachment B)

Lease Agreement with Windward to Lease City-owned Property adjacent to the Charnock water-well field.

07/24/18 (attachment C)

Sixth Lease Amendment which allowed the City to sign the City of Los Angeles Application for the Master Plan Update Project and allowed for an update to the shared-use-of-facilities provisions.

Financial Impacts and Budget Actions

There is no immediate financial impact or budget action necessary as a result of the recommended action.


Meeting History

Sep 10, 2019 5:30 PM  City Council Regular Meeting
draft Draft