Westfield Century City Goes to Planning Commission

A reader emails in regarding the upcoming November 13th City Planning Commission hearing which will decide the fate of the proposed expansion of Westfield's Century City mall complex.

"This Thursday, the city Planning Commission will decide whether or not Westfield can proceed with its plan to tear down the historic 1801 Avenue of the Stars in Century City (designed by Welton Becket) in order to replace it with a residential tower. The new tower would be three times the height of the current landmark building (it’ll be nearly 49 stories and 560 feet, making it the tallest building on Santa Monica Blvd.) Part of the oddity of this project is that though Westfield has been touting this tower as a centerpiece of the new Century City, they have never shown the designs of this building to the public. Up until now, some renderings have been buried in the Environmental Impact Reports, but the tower’s never been pictured in their brochures, nor on their website."

And about that new tower?

"Finally, this past week, a week before the hearing, Westfield sent a glossy brochure to the commissioners that contained just a few drawings (see attachments.) The design is by Rios Clementi Hale, a firm that has never before designed a residential high rise. Century City does not have a design review board. If the Commission approves this project, not only will we lose an historic building, but we also also find it replaced by something that is barely above a sketch on a cocktail napkin. There is no scale model to review. No virtual walkthrough. These drawings are all we have of what would be the most visible building in Century City."

Per the Planning Commission agenda [view as PDF], City Planning is recommending approval of the project. The agenda further fleshes out what is proposed: Proposed Project: "Demolition of 360,964 square feet of office building at 1801 Avenue of the Stars and 1930 Century Park West and reconfiguration of shopping center space at 10250 Santa Monica Boulevard. Construction of 358,881 square feet of retail space, 106,523 square feet of new office space and 262 residential units within a 49-story building with a maximum height of 579 feet measured from the plaza level of the Shopping Center." · Westfield Century City [Official Site]For more stories from Curbed LA, go to la.curbed.com.

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