Controversial Millennium Hollywood Project Basically Killed
The controversial Millennium Hollywood project has been sent back to the drawing board by a judge's order—and it's not because of the Hollywood fault that might or might not be there.On Thursday, a Los Angeles County judge ruled that the city ignored the concerns that Caltrans raised about the project's impact on the traffic on the 101 freeway. According to the L.A. Times, Judge James C. Chalfant's ruling prevents the city from granting any building permits that would allow the project to move forward. The developers of the project would have to draft a whole new environmental impact report in order to keep the project alive—a process that could take years.
If built, the $1 billion project would have sprung up 39- and a 35-story towers flanking the landmark Capitol Records building. Proponents say the project would be the centerpiece of a neighborhood revitalization would would bring a million square feet of housing and business to the area. NIMBYs cited the potential impact on traffic and crime, though the fact that it would have (maybe?) been built on top of an active fault became the main, er, thrust of the opposition to the project. Ironically, the judge said the city was adequate in its assessment of the seismic risks.
In his 46-page ruling, Judge Chalfant said the city's own traffic impact study did not meet Caltrans' requirements and that "the city was not free to ignore" their demands. Caltrans' main concern with the project was that it would cause backups on the 101 freeway on- and off-ramps in the area. Both the city and the Millennium developers found that the project's impact on traffic would be "less than significant."