James Nederlander and The Clarett Group are planning to finish what was started more than 75 years ago by adding 10 stories to the office tower above the Pantages Theatre in Hollywood, Calif.
"The Pantages Office Tower will become the premier arts and entertainment office address in Los Angeles which matches the prestige of the Pantages Theatre as L.A.’s ‘Broadway’ venue," James Nederlander Sr. said in a statement. "Currently, Hollywood has no truly Class A office space, and the Tower will provide an iconic location for companies seeking a prestigious home in Hollywood."
The 2,720-capacity Pantages Theatre, which is now owned by Ned Pan, a James Nederlander company, opened in June 1930 as the last and largest of 22 theatres designed by the late B. Marcus Priteca. Known for its Art Deco façade, its opulent interiors and exterior were constructed for $1.25 million, but the venue was never fully completed, according to a press release.
A 12-story office tower was originally planned to top the theatre and overlook Hollywood and Vine but the 1929 stock market crash left the structure with only two floors completed, according to the Los Angeles Times.
Before Nederlander acquired the Pantages, which is currently home to the Los Angeles production of Broadway’s "Wicked," the theatre passed hands through many famous owners including Howard Hughes, who renamed the venue RKO Pantages Theatre. During the aviation legend’s ownership, the theatre hosted the Academy Award’s Ceremonies during the 1950s.
In 2000, Nederlander treated the Pantages Theatre to a $10 million restoration and upgrade.
Plans for the office tower are starting to unfold again. By the end of December, the City of Los Angeles entitlement process for the Pantages Office Tower will begin and include a full Environmental Impact Report, according to a statement.
The Times noted that the report could delay work on the 200,000-square-foot project, which is estimated to cost $75 million to $100 million, as long as two years and construction is expected to take a further two years.
When construction begins, the still-unnamed architect will stay true to the original design by working from Priteca’s blueprints that were approved by the City of Los Angeles in 1929.
Nederlander’s partner in the project, New York developer Clarett Group, is keeping busy in the meantime by working on Hollywood’s largest mixed-use project, Blvd6200, with construction scheduled to start in January.
The 1.1 million square foot complex will sit adjacent to the Pantages Theatre and include 1,042 units of rental housing – of which 10 percent are affordable – and live-work units, retail, restaurants, open plaza areas and parking for all uses, according to the statement.