The Beverly Hills City Council is moving ahead with an agreement to keep the United Talent Agency in the city for another 15 years, but is hesitating on putting up unofficial street signs for United Talent Agency Drive (a subcommittee will continue to consider the idea). UTA recently signed a lease with Tishman Speyer for space at 9326/9346 Civic Center Dr. (which will also be home to Playboy soon), and will move 350 employees there from its long-time home on Wilshire. The BH Patch reports that "Former Beverly Hills Mayor Mark Egerman, the attorney representing UTA, said that during negotiations with city staff, UTA was assured that while Beverly Hills would not legally change the street name, it would install United Talent Agency Drive or UTA Drive placards below Civic Center Drive markers, as has been done with other ceremoniously named streets." And Egerman talks like UTA is willing to walk over the issue: "Signage is an extremely important issue for my client. They are in the branding business and they were being wooed very heavily...outside of our city...It was sufficiently important to us that [UTA] delayed in the execution of their lease until we thought we had a meeting of the minds on signage." Landlord Tishman Speyer, meanwhile, will be renaming the agency's new home to UTA Plaza. The city did agree to shift the Bev Hills Farmers' Market for UTA (putting the main entrance at Rexford), but also took out a clause that would require it to maintain the right turn arrow for cars headed east from Santa Monica onto Beverly.
· City Deal With UTA Hits Snag Over Signage [BH Patch]