Controversial Proposed South LA Hotel Clears LA Councils Planning Committee

Grand Park and the City Hall in Los Angeles City California

Photo: Getty Images

LOS ANGELES (CNS) - A proposed 168-room Marriott hotel in South Los Angeles cleared the City Council's planning committee Tuesday and is expected to be reviewed by the full council on Friday.

The proposed seven-story building would be located on a 34,000-square- foot, city-owned site that has been vacant since 2010. It was formerly the site of the Bethune Library, and is located near USC.

The council voted 12-1 on Jan. 17 to override the denial of a permit for the hotel by the South Los Angeles Area Planning Commission.

On Tuesday, three members of the council's planning committee recommended approval of the item, with two absences.

In 2019, the City Council entered into an agreement with a developer to build the Marriott on the site. But the local planning commission last month sided with the city's zoning administrator in denying a conditional use permit and site plan review amid concerns that the lot should be used to provide affordable housing. Several public speakers addressed the council two weeks ago and again at Tuesday's committee meeting opposing the hotel.

Councilman Marqueece Harris-Dawson, who represents the area and is chair of the committee, introduced a motion asking the council to "assert jurisdiction" over the local planning commission's action.

On Tuesday, Harris-Dawson called the project one of "much controversy" but said the Eighth District "needs to be able to participate in the economy of Los Angeles."

"When the World Cup comes to L.A., were we to go along with the folks opposed to this project, what the district would get out of that economic activity is increased traffic, people parking all through their neighborhoods, trash and everything else -- and not get one dollar of benefit from that economic activity," Harris-Dawson said.

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