A notice of preparation for an environmental impact report has revealed a mammoth expansion proposal that would develop the John Anson Ford Amphitheatre in the Cahuenga Pass into a full-on entertainment hub, with 47,550 square feet of new additions on the theater's existing campus. The proposal (the Ford Theaters Project) seeks to create something called the Ford Plaza, with "a restaurant, a 299-seat theatre, a box office, a conference room, [and] offices"; the Ford Terrace, a two-story building with groundfloor office space and a self-serve cafe; and, on the site of an old motel, the Ford Transit Center, "a designated area for bus and valet drop-off, a three-level parking structure, a 99-seat rehearsal and event space."
The expansion would also include maintenance and upgrades to the 94-year-old Ford Theatre, which recently received $7.5 million in funds to make some upgrades for the 2012 to 2013 season, according to a press release; they also received some sexy upgrades in 2010. The notice does not include any mention of funding, but the Board of Supervisors voted on funding a couple weeks ago; we're waiting to hear back on what specifically that will cover.
While these developments are being built on already-developed land (mostly parking lots or smaller buildings now), an email from a member of the Hollywood Hills West Neighborhood Council to the group expresses concern that this new development and all the people it would bring would result in—what else?—traffic problems, starting with the construction and ending never. The member calls it a "mini Hollywood Bowl" (and just across the street from the not-mini Hollywood Bowl), so expect some neighbor opposition outta the cranky and traffic-beset Hills.
· Notice of Preparation of a Draft Environmental Impact Report and Public Scoping Meeting [Ford Theaters]