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The Real Deal Los Angeles

Council approves Caruso’s 333 La Cienega project

Council member Paul Koretz ultimately backed project after Caruso reduced height
January 24, 2017 02:47PM

Councilmember Paul Koretz and a rendering of the project at 333 La Cienega Boulevard (Credit: Getty, Caruso Affiliated)

The Los Angeles City Council voted to approve developer Rick Caruso’s 145-unit residential tower near the Beverly Center Tuesday.

Caruso agreed to reduce the size of his project at 333 South La Cienega Boulevard last week to 16 stories instead of the originally planned height of 20 stories.

Council member Paul Koretz, who initially endorsed the project in November before withdrawing support the next month, ultimately backed the project following Caruso’s height reduction, the Los Angeles Times reported.

Opponents of the project, however, are not happy with the compromise. One member of the Beverly Wilshire Homes Association is threatening to sue over the approval.

The project is expected to start construction later this year.

The L.A. Times reported last month that Caruso and his associates donated more than $476,000 to L.A. politicians and their pet initiatives over a five-year period. While legal, developers giving sizable donations when their projects are in planning stages removes the public’s trust in the planning process, Michael Manville of UCLA told the Times.

Caruso said the donations were for the purpose of making the city better, comparing them to his large gifts to churches, nonprofits and educational institutions. [LAT] — Subrina Hudson