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Metropolis Reborn

Expect to see even more gantry cranes in South Park in the near future. This week Mayor Villaraigosa paved the way for the $450 million Hilton Convention Center hotel, and just last month the first dirt was turned for the $1.5 billion LA Live project (otherwise known as Hootersville). Now, the long-suffering Metropolis project has been resuscitated with a key Community Redevelopment Agency approval.

Metropolis was first conceived in 1988 as a 6.5 acre cluster of office towers on James M. Woods (the street, not the actor) and 8th Street adjacent to the I-110. The project floundered when the downtown market for office space evaporated in the early ‘90s recession. Yet City Centre Development’s John Vallance has kept the faith and sagely refocused on residential space. The current $800 million project features five condominium and hotel towers from 30 to 55 stories with ground floor retail and entertainment space. The mandatory public art component is devoted to spicing up nearby Francisco street with sidewalk cafes, landscaping, and other urban delights.
· The Return of Metropolis [LA Downtown News]