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40% Reduction in Universal Studios Expansion Sought

Entertainment: Yaroslavsky and Ferraro call for elimination of planned theme park and convention hotels. Dozens of homeowner groups support move.

June 07, 1997|HUGO MARTIN and BARRY STAVRO | TIMES STAFF WRITERS

* Split the remaining 3.3-million-square-foot project into two phases, with the first 2 million square feet to be built in one phase and the rest not until measures to deal with traffic problems are added.

* Expand landscaping around the project.

* Reduce building heights to eliminate shading of residential properties.

* Impose new regulations to reduce "amplified entertainment noise."

* Enclose or shut down the Water World attraction, which neighbors say creates too much noise.

* Require special permits on a case-by-case basis for alcohol service.

Times staff writer James Bates contributed to this story.

(BEGIN TEXT OF INFOBOX / INFOGRAPHIC)

Universal City Expansion Plan

Universal Studios wants to more than double the facilities of its theme park and movie studios overlooking the Cahuenga Pass. Los Angeles County Supervisor Zev Yaroslavsky and City Council President John Ferraro want to scale back the proposed expansion. Features of the proposal and suggested reduction:

Original Plan

Current size: 5.4 million square feet on 415 acres, shown above.

Proposed expansion: 5.9 million square feet of theme park attractions, resort hotels, studio and office space.

Parking: Add 6.3 million square feet.

Hotels: Construct 3,400 rooms.

Time to completion: 25 years.

Cost: $2 billion.

****

Scaled-Back Plan

* Shrink the project by approximately 2.5 million square feet, a reduction of more than 40%

* Phase in the project over 15 years, rather than 25.

* Eliminate the proposed new theme park.

* Limit the number of new hotel rooms to 1,200.

* All traffic impacts must be mitigated by Universal.

* Create noise regulations to ensure that noise from amplified entertainment at Universal Studios does not adversely affect nearby residential neighborhoods. The Water World show should be brought into compliance with such regulations or be closed.

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