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NBCUniversal Cancels Residential Development as Part of Massive Expansion Plan

The 3,000 units had been opposed by many nearby neighborhood leaders and Los Angeles County Supervisor Zev Yaroslavsky.

NBCUniversal's massive expansion plan has been revised and will no longer include a controversial addition of 3,000 units and associated retail spots on what is now Universal’s backlot, according to Deadline.com.

The residential units had been opposed by many nearby neighborhood leaders because of potential negative environmental impacts, as well as increased congestion and a decrease in backlot jobs. In February, Los Angeles County Supervisor Zev Yaroslavsky .

Originally priced at $3 billion, the project is now estimated at $1.6 billion, according to the Los Angeles Daily News.

NBCUniversal president and COO Ron Meyer released the following statement, according to Deadline:

Los Angeles has been the home of Universal for nearly 100 years and The Evolution Plan is our commitment to our community, to our neighbors and to our businesses. We have gathered feedback from thousands of members of our community, including our elected officials. And, after taking a hard look at the project, the current real estate market, our business needs and the needs of our surrounding communities, we believe it’s best to ask the City and County to focus on our 20-year plan without any residential development and to retain our backlot for production.

This is the right time in the process to make this decision and it will enable us to concentrate and invest in our core businesses — television and film production, Universal Studios Hollywood Theme Park and CityWalk. Planning for our future in a way that is responsive to the community has always been a priority of the Evolution Plan. Today marks the next step in making this important project a reality.

The NBCUniversal Evolution plan involves revamping studio facilities, adding new theme park attractions and Citywalk venues, creating new jobs and installing connections to public transportation to and from the complex. 

Check these previous stories to learn more about the NBCUniversal expansion plan:

Cary Adams July 18, 2012 at 05:19 PM
Dropping the residential component was the simple recognition that market has changed. Credit to LaBonge and Yaraslosky is just acknowledgement of economic reality. Quite frankly, most don't really care what NBC-Universal does on their property but do expect as much mitigation as possible for the surrounding community. That being said, they were wise to separate this issue of development on the west side of Lankershim over the Universal Redline Station. Development of that property will likely be much more contentious.
Skraeling July 19, 2012 at 07:12 PM
Before the Valley accepts another big project, let the developers and politicians clean up the mess and instant slum they have created on Laurel Canyon near Valley Plaza.....this is truly criminal and yet no one investigates or reports on it...an entire area blighted and no cares because the majority are working class or immigrant in that area......it should be burned down.
Cary Adams July 21, 2012 at 04:44 AM
Don't know how 'criminal' the failure of Valley Plaza development really is, but it's certainly a failure to recognize 200,000 to 300,000 residents of the central Valley are completely lacking any, let alone descent, retail. When will developers learn?
Skraeling July 22, 2012 at 09:21 PM
Cary, just a CURSORY study of what went down at Valley Plaza indicates a very questionable series of giveaways to developers and the taking of lands dedicated to parks and the eminate domain issues done by our "city council"...this stinks to high heaven yet it is in a poor district of mostly immigrants or just the equivalent to "fly over" country for LA people who live elsewhere and are served by more upscale centers. Yes, I suspect there are crimes involved, but we will never know..we do know we have instant slums where there were none..
Michael October 27, 2012 at 05:28 PM
Sorry, Scott, but your information is quite incorrect. TODs have proven to be very successful and offer many public benefits, including increased property values, convenience, reduced traffic congestion and reduced pollution. Property values in Mission Meridian Village in South Pasadena increased in value by 10.4% from 2005-2009 while other prices for properties in South Pasadena fell 16.7%. I suggest that you read any articles written by Christopher Leinberger to gain some enlightenment.

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