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The USS Iowa Could Find a Home in L.A.
Photo by Phan J. Alan Elliott/Department of Defense
Th last World War II battleship currently without a home may just end up permanently in Los Angeles. If so, it would be turned into a museum -- think Midway in San Diego -- and become a major anchor for development and tourism along the sleepy San Pedro waterfront.
This morning the Los Angeles City Council approved a resolution to support berthing the historic battleship at the Port of Los Angeles. "I think it's a no brainer," said Councilmember Janice Hahn, who carried the resolution and represents the harbor. "It would be a great day for Los Angeles."
Hahn said bringing the ship to San Pedro has the full support of the community. The nonprofit group Pacific Battleship Center says it has the funding to bring the battleship to Los Angeles and will apply, pending approval from the city's Harbor Commission, but one major challenge is finding the exact location and studying the impact on waterfront re-development initiative. A cost-benefit analysis is in progress, which should be discussed in an October meeting.
The museum is expected to create 100 jobs and an additional 100 jobs in the surrounding community and have a $250 million direct and indirect impact. The only other city currently competing for the ship is Vallejo in the Bay Area.
The USS Iowa, nicknamed "Big Stick," first went into service in 1943 and was used in World War II and the Korean War.