Mall: The mall is negotiating with the city for the right to put up billboards. Scott Snowden


Santa Monica Place mall management company Macerich will discuss “price and terms of payment for billboard license”

In this evening’s meeting, City Council will discuss in closed session the possibility of having billboards advertising adorn parking structure seven.

The Daily Press has learned that multiple billboards, probably numbering two or three, will be considered, with one also potentially being placed on the exterior of the former Bloomingdale’s building at 315 Colorado Avenue that wraps around the corner of 4th Street.

This is also where the planned Arte Museum will be located. The self-described “50,000 square foot immersive, digital art destination” is Korea’s largest immersive media art exhibition organized by renowned digital design company d’strict. They created the colossal computer-generated “Wave”

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Coex Convention & Exhibition Center in Seoul, South Korea, that you might have seen on social media some time ago. Set to open in early 2024, the Arte Museum is expected to draw one million visitors annually.

Santa Monica Place shopping mall and its attached parking structures are managed by Macerich, a Santa Monica-based real estate investment trust that is the third-largest owner of shopping centers in the country. Structure seven features a facade on the Broadway-facing exterior designed by local architectural firm Pugh + Scarpa called “Cradle,” inspired by Newton’s Cradle, a device that demonstrates the conservation of both momentum and energy with swinging spheres.

According to the meeting agenda, price and terms of payment for billboard license on parking structure seven will be discussed and joining council members will be Melissa Spagnuolo, Community Partnerships Manager with the City of Santa Monica and Jon Stoeckly, Vice President, Real Estate Development at Macerich and Julia Ladd, Vice President Property Management at Macerich.

Billboards themselves are not exactly commonplace in Santa Monica, in fact you have to actually cross city limits before you find one.

The subject of billboard advertising in the city of Santa Monica has caused controversy on a number of occasions in the past. During one of the many council discussions surrounding what would eventually become known as the Digital Wayfinding and Out-of-Home Advertising Kiosk Program, Councilmember Phil Brock condemned the idea of “huge Time Square billboards on the side of Santa Monica Place.”

The exact nature, size and even whether or not these billboards will form part of a digital display relating to the Arte Museum, are as yet unconfirmed.

Scott fell in love with Santa Monica when he was much younger and now, after living and working in five different countries, he has returned. He's written for the likes of the FT, NBC, the BBC and CNN.