SAN PEDRO — Despite pleas from local business leaders, a Board of Harbor Commissioners committee has recommended that the board vote approval of a $54.7-million hotel and retail center at the World Cruise Center at its next meeting.
Merchants from the Ports o' Call seaside shopping village and downtown San Pedro had asked the board to look into the proposed complex in September after the Harbor Department staff recommended approval. The merchants said they feared that the retail portion of the development would siphon customers from Ports o' Call and downtown.
But after holding a public hearing and taking written testimony, the committee--composed of commissioners E. Grace Payne and Michael W. Schwab--concluded that shops in the proposed retail center would complement San Pedro's other commercial areas.
Representatives from H.C.T. Inc., the Hollywood-based development company that wants to build the hotel and retail center, have said that the complex will generate new business at both the World Cruise Center and the community's other commercial centers.