One of the things that puzzles me about the proposed Miramar Hotel expansion project is the insistence that they need the condos, which contribute to the height of the enormous 130-foot tall wall along 2nd Street, in order to pay for construction costs.
Paul Silvern from HR&A Advisors told the Planning Commission earlier this month that eliminating even 20% of the condos would make the project not “pencil out.”
During the Santa Monica Airport Visioning process a few years ago, Paul Silvern initially reported that Santa Monica Airport generated $275 million in direct and indirect fiscal impact per year, but in that report he didn’t seem to separate out aviation activity and non-aviation activity.
The City Manager at the time, Rod Gould, later walked that back and said that aviation activity at the Airport generated about the same amount of fiscal impact as a medium-sized strip mall.
(However, that hasn’t stopped pilots from touting the $275 million figure ad nauseam as a reason to keep the Airport open.)
Meanwhile, Loew’s Hotel was built without condos.
Le Merigot was built without condos.
Shutters was built without condos.
The Shore Hotel was built without condos.
The huge Proper Hotel at Wilshire and 7th was built without condos.
And the developer of the proposed Gehry-designed hotel at Ocean and Santa Monica has already offered to eliminate the condos from that project and shortened the main building from 22 to 12 stories.
So why is the Miramar different?