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Sea Level Drive Neighborhood
One of the most attractive little streets in Malibu is Sea Level Drive, off the western portion of Broad Beach Road about a mile and a half from Trancas Canyon Road (at PCH). The eastern entrance is barred by a private gate, but you can walk in to access Lechuza Beach. After a short downhill section, and a left fork to Lechuza (Victoria) Point, Sea Level Drive turns to parallel the beach. The homes are large, beautiful and relatively new. Because of the private street and the fact that most of the homes are across the street from the beach, there is a sense of community here. That is, unlike Carbon Beach and other areas of Malibu where the homes are a barrier wall between PCH and the beach, here you can walk along Sea Level Drive with homes on one side and the beach on the other. In many places, gardens have been planted on the edge of the road on the beach side, further enhancing this already delightful street.
A second branch of Sea Level Drive is a little to the west, also off Broad Beach Road near its western connection to PCH. Here the street goes toward the beach but ends before reaching it so only the last houses have direct beach access. The two branches of Sea Level do not connect, although you can easily walk between them on the beach.
The beach along Sea Level Drive and beyond its end, a 2700 foot section where there are no private homes directly on the ocean side, is sandy Lechuza Beach. The public owns the beach frontage here, purchased with a $9,000,000 grant from the State Coastal Conservancy to the Mountains Recreation and Conservation Authority (MRCA), augmented by private donations.
In 1975-77 the security gates were installed to close east Sea Level Drive at Broad Beach Road, an action taken without permits, resulting in years of litigation. The matter was settled by the donation of beach property, providing improved access for the public in exchange for more privacy on Sea Level Drive. MRCA acquired the beach and the public has the right to use Sea Level Drive to walk down to the beach. While there is a formidible gate and threatening signs, pedestrians are permitted to use the access gate to the left.
Do not cross private property to reach the beach. Public access is provided in the daytime by walking the length of East Sea Level Drive to its end, then use the path onto the beach.
La Chuza Beach can also be reached from the western end of Broad Beach by going around Lachuza Point, difficult even at low tide. Far easier access is by walking eastward from El Matador State Beach, about a half mile.
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