A pending presentation to the Los Angeles City Planning Commission unveils potential changes to Hollywood Center, the $1-billion mixed-use complex planned to replace a pair of surface parking lots next to the Capitol Records Building.

The proposed development - which would rise just north of Hollywood and Vine - was most recently envisioned as a series of high-rise and mid-rise buildings featuring 1,005 apartments - including 133 senior affordable housing units - above 30,000 square feet of ground-floor commercial space and associated parking.

An alternate scheme which is now being studied by the City of Los Angeles, designated as Alternative 8, calls for major revisions to the eastern site.  In lieu of a 35-story apartment tower and an 11-story mid-rise, developer MP Los Angeles now proposes to build a 17-story structure containing nearly 386,000 square feet of office space above 14,800 square feet of ground-floor retail and parking for 1,103 vehicles.

Handel Architects is designing the tower, which would stand approximately 367 feet in height.  Renderings show a contemporary glass-clad structure with a series of terrace decks which cascade down toward the eastern property line.

Across Vine Street, plans call for two buildings - a 49-story, 595-foot-tall residential tower and an 11-story senior housing complex.  The two structures would contain a combined total of 903 apartments - with 133 senior affordable units retained from the earlier proposal - above 12,000 square feet of retail space and parking for 1,134 vehicles.

At the ground level, the two sites would be connected together by pedestrian paseo cutting east-to-west from Ivar Avenue to Argyle.  The paseo, which is being designed by James Corner Field Operations, would include plaza, seating areas, and landscaping.

Hollywood Center, which is scheduled for consideration at the October 15 meeting of the Planning Commission, is facing six separate appeals from project opponents.

One of those appeals comes from Millennium Partners, which has requested that the Planning Commission approve the original proposal, rather than the staff recommended Alternative 8.

Should the project receive entitlements from the City of Los Angeles, MP Los Angeles - an affiliate of Millennium Partners - has previously indicated its intent to break ground on Hollywood Center in 2022.

Millennium Partners has sought to develop the the Capitol Records-adjacent sites for the better part of a decade.  A prior iteration of the development - a more than $650-million proposal called the Millennium Hollywood - was scuttled by the ruling of an appellate court judge in 2015.

Besides the scale and height of the proposed project, the crux of the opposition to Hollywood Center has been the issue of earthquake safety.  In July, the Los Angeles Times reported that the the California Geological Survey concluded that an active fault strand runs through the property, potentially making the property unsuitable for development.

The City and Millennium Partners, citing the results of two subsurface surveys conducted in 2015 and 2019, have disputed the claims of the Geological Survey.

A letter sent by the developer to the California Natural Resources Agency in August accuses the state agency of misconstruing the results of a study by the U.S. Geological Survey to provide new evidence of a fault line under the project site, while also ignoring evidence from the 2015 and 2019 surveys.

Nonetheless, a proposed condition of approval for the project would require that the developer conduct exploratory trenching prior to any excavation or grading activities prior to construction.