Patience is a virtue, right? Not for urbanists who want to see more of our neglected blocks in Downtown LA cleaned up and activated as quickly as possible. That impatience (read: eagerness) applies especially to the Hotel Clark project located near 4th and Hill where the future downtown streetcar is planned to pass right on by along Hill Street. DTLA Rising first reported in Dec 2011 that the historic, long-vacant Hotel Clark building, owned by NY-based Chetrit Group, would be brought back as a hotel and operated under the King & Grove boutique hotel brand (keeping the “Hotel Clark” name intact). Over the last year and a half, there was very little known about the project timeline as the Chetrit Group never revealed information to the public or media. Nevertheless, we knew work continued inside the hotel, albeit at a glacial pace. We saw the orange curtains in the rooms, spotted mattresses stored in the building, and found a video showing the finished rooftop pool, but that was about it.
Given the mystery surrounding the Hotel Clark’s construction timeline, it was especially exciting to see work resume this week on the much needed facade refurbishment — a sign that we are closer to the finish line. Downtown resident, Elan Feldman, spotted activity yesterday and sent in these great shots showing green tarp covering the fire escape next to the Hotel Clark vertical neon sign and construction crews applying gray paint to the building facade.
Feldman describes the situation perched high atop across the street: “They’ve been scraping the paint off and seeing if anything falls off. They’ve blocked off the sidewalk while they’re doing the work. I can’t see what they’re doing under the green tarp but it sounds like they’re scraping away. The guys in the harness are going up and down scraping off the paint. You can see that in the second picture and they might be painting it GREY?!”
In addition, another downtown resident sent in a public notice dated February 27, 2013 that the Hotel Clark owners applied for a Type-47 liquor license that includes beer and wine to be consumed in a restaurant environment only. Yet another sign that things are finally beginning to move forward. Basically, we can assume that most of the work is completed on the inside of the hotel and now the facade improvement is probably the last major hurdle before opening the hotel probably (read: hopefully) later this year.