A City Council committee recommended Wednesday that the owner of the Hollywood & Highland complex be given a $30 million loan to retrofit the Kodak Theatre so it can house Cirque du Soleil performances for a decade.
CIM Group, which owns Hollywood & Highland but leases the theatre, hopes to bring the acrobatic performances to the venue starting in 2011.
In exchange for the loan, CIM and its partners would pledge to create at least 858 jobs, according to the proposal under consideration, the Los Angeles Times reported.
Council President Eric Garcetti, whose district includes the complex, has thrown his support behind the loan, telling The Times that Cirque du Soleil would be a major tourist draw.
But Councilman Dennis Zine, who represents part of the West San Fernando Valley, questioned the wisdom of putting so much loan money into a single project.
"If you take that $30 million and spread it throughout the city, then that $30 million could generate $100 million," Zine told The Times.
The 12-year loan was ok'd by the council's Housing, Community and Economic Development Committee.
CIM Group, which bought the mall complex in 2004, has been trying without success to secure private financing for the Cirque shows, Ninoos Benjamin, economic development director with the city's development department, told The Times.