Robertson Lane retail-hotel project gets key preservation approval

Faring is repurposing the West Hollywood Factory nightclub

Renderings of Robertson Lane (Credit: Hodgetts + Fung Architects, Click to enlarge)
Renderings of Robertson Lane (Credit: Hodgetts + Fung Architects, Click to enlarge)

Robertson Lane, a mixed-use retail and hotel project that will repurpose the historic gay nightclub the Factory, got a green light from the West Hollywood Historic Preservation Commission, WeHoville reported. The approval is seen as a major step for a complicated project that still must face the planning commission and City Council for a final vote.

Faring, which calls itself a progressive-oriented developer, will incorporate the nightclub into a nine-story hotel with 241 rooms and a rooftop pool. Ground-level retail, six levels of underground parking for 1,000 vehicles and restaurant space are also planned for the 1.94-acre space at 9091 Santa Monica Boulevard.

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The project had to pass the preservation committee because it is listed on the California Register of Historical Places. The Factory building opened in 1929 and originally housed Mitchell Camera, an early movie camera maker. In the 1980s, it also served as the Studio One nightclub. The building will be dismantled and rebuilt, trimming it by 100 feet.

Faring, led by Jason Illoulian, is also incorporating another historically LGBT spot into a project planned nearby, at 7985 Santa Monica Boulevard. Called the French Market, it will remodel the iconic 1936-built French Market structure, rather than demolish it. If approved, a ground-floor restaurant, coffee shop and creative offices will rise on the site. [WV]Natalie Hoberman