Sick of tourists “crawling all over the Hills” and scrambling to take selfies near the Hollywood sign, Hollywood residents are urging city officials to create an official visitors center.
Both tourists and locals would benefit from having tour vans, Lakers tickets and a Hollywood sign viewing station all under one roof, the center’s proponents say. Currently, the city’s Tourism and Convention board only operates two kiosk-sized “huts” across all of L.A, the Los Feliz Ledger reported. One of the kiosks is located in Hollywood at the back of the Hollywood and Highland Center.
“We’ve left it to the nonprofit world to deal with this, and they haven’t,” Sheila Irani, a 2015 City Council candidate, told the Ledger last week.
Leron Gubler, the CEO of the Hollywood Chamber of Commerce, agreed: “The reason the tourists are crawling all over the Hills is because there is no central place to go,” he said.
Irani, whose campaign platform includes plans to build an official visitors center, even has a specific site picked out for the prospective structure— three adjacent commercial lots on Hollywood Boulevard between Gower Street and Bronson Avenue. The site is the “largest property on Hollywood Boulevard that has a straight-on view of the Hollywood Sign,” she said.
Council member David Ryu, who represents much of Hollywood, is supportive of the idea, according to his spokesperson, Estevan Montemayor.
The next steps would be for the Chamber to confer with Mayor Eric Garcetti and Council member Mitch O’Farrell, he added. [LFL] — Cathaleen Chen