LA County has released its draft environmental impact report detailing all its plans for the big revamp of the Ford Amphitheatre and its surrounding grounds, so let's take a peek. The proposed changes include a rehab of the historic venue (it opened in 1931) and new spaces for concessions, retail, offices, and transit in the same footprint as the existing Ford property. It's no secret this place isn't exactly easy to find or get to, so the hope is that a little more space for buses and vans, plus things to do once at and around the Ford will entice people to make the trip. As the DEIR puts it, the County hopes to "transform the existing Ford Theatres from a single-use performing arts facility open primarily on weekends to a multi-use cultural and recreational center open daily for a wide variety of users." These conceptual renderings (they're not final!) by Levin and Associates Architects show attention-grabbing structures standing out against the hills like stout luminaria.
Besides the amphitheater rehab, the project would add a two-story structure called the Ford Terrace, with offices, concessions, and a "raised plaza deck," as well as the Ford Plaza, a deck with a restaurant, 299-seat theater, box office, and more on top of a three-level parking structure. A new transit center would have bus and valet drop-off and an event space, and, bonus, they're also throwing in a .75-mile hiking trail.
A public review meeting will be held this coming Monday; it's anyone's guess whether the neighbors will rally against the project on the predictable grounds that it will cause gridlock (a "mini-Hollywood Bowl"), or encourage the redevelopment of the existing cultural center.
· The Proposed Ford Theaters Project DEIR [Official Site]
· Sprawling Entertainment Complex Proposed Around Ford Amphitheatre in the Cahuenga Pass [Curbed LA]