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Hollywood earthquake fault threatens Millennium Project

A new discovery could doom the Millennium Project in Hollywood. The land may be sitting above an active earthquake fault.
January 8, 2014 12:00:00 AM PST
A new map showing the exact location of the Hollywood Fault could have a major impact on new construction, including the Millennium Project.

The fault line is about nine miles long and capable of producing a devastating earthquake. According to a newly created map, it happens to slice right through the exact spot where developers are planning to build two massive skyscrapers, near Hollywood Boulevard and Vine Street.

"Anyone that is going to build a structure for human occupancy within that zone must do a very detailed geological study to define exactly where the fault is within that zone," said John Parrish with the California Geological Survey.

At a news conference on Wednesday, scientists with the California Geological Survey released a map of the Hollywood Fault. It's the first time that state scientists have mapped what they say is the exact location of the active fault line, which runs parallel to Hollywood Boulevard.

The city approved the Millennium Project last year, but opponents say the newly released map should stop the project in its tracks.

"Do the right thing, acknowledge that the state map confirms that the fault runs through the heart of the Millennium Project and withdraw and rescind all approvals for this dangerous and ridiculous skyscraper project on top of an earthquake fault," said Robert Silverstein, an opponent of the Millennium Project.

It's against state law to construct new buildings within 50 feet of an earthquake fault that's been declared active by state officials. But the new map is only a preliminary one. Developers have six months to dispute its findings by doing more extensive tests.

"That's what we have come up with here, is some more information for the city to consider and the Millennium Project people to consider as they go forward," said Parrish.

In a statement, developers of the Millennium Project dispute the state's preliminary findings, saying, in part, "The detailed subsurface geologic and geotechnical investigations that were performed on our site (which included borings and subsurface exploration) found no evidence of an active earthquake fault on the property."


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