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Partially-Built Hollywood Target Ordered To Stop Construction

We have a husk of a Target, but no Target. (Photo by howard-f via the LAist Featured Photos pool on Flickr)
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The much-anticipated Hollywood Target store has hit a snag. A judge has ordered that all construction stop, even though construction is already underway.The Target store on Sunset Boulevard and Western Avenue was supposed to contain parking, eateries and other retail. It was also supposed to be 74 feet high, but as it turns out, commercial buildings in the area cannot be taller than 35 feet. Superior Court Judge Richard L. Fruin, Jr. has sided with the store's community opposition and shut Target down in its tracks, the L.A. Times reports.

To be fair, this particular Target and its height has been a subject of controversy for a while. It was first approved in 2010, then foiled by lawyer Robert Silverstein who represented two neighborhood naysayers, Robert Blue and Doug Haines. The project was approved once more in 2012.

Two community groups filed a lawsuit against the Target—the La Mirada Avenue Neighborhood Association (of which Haines is a member), and the Citizens Coalition of Los Angeles. And, naturally, Silverstein returned to represent them.

Silverstein says his clients want Target to tear what they've built down and build a store under 35 feet. Opponents are also worried that if Target gets the all clear, other developers will want to build tall buildings in the area, too. Target, on the other hand, wants the city to rewrite some of the zoning laws that apply to the Vermont/Western Station Neighborhood Area Plan.

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Lawyers for Target say they focused on building a larger store because that's what Mayor Garcetti, then a Hollywood councilman, wanted them to do. According to Marie Lloyd, a spokesperson for Garcetti, the Mayor envisioned a pedestrian-friendly shopping area with restaurants and other retail that would create jobs. Fruin does not believe Garcetti's vision merits exempting Target from the rules.

Meanwhile, we've got a husk of a Target, but no Target. Target is appealing the decision, saying that if their request to continue work is denied, it will be a blow to the site's construction workers.

This isn't the first time the La Mirada group and Silverstein have stood in the way of a new development. They also opposed new condos at Melrose Avenue and Larchmont Avenue, the Old Spaghetti Factory tower and several other projects, according to Curbed LA.