Silver Lake church-to-hotel conversion seeks city approval

SILVER LAKE — A proposal by Silver Lake business woman Dana Hollister to transform a former Silver Lake church into a boutique hotel with a restaurant,  bars, pool and rooftop garden will be the subject of a public hearing scheduled for Wednesday.

The 26-room hotel envisioned for the former Pilgrim Church on Griffith Park Boulevard has generated opposition from neighbors concerned about increased noise, traffic congestion and the loss of street parking. Meanwhile, supporters say the project would help preserve and revitalize the now vacant church and increase the relatively few number of hotel and motel rooms in Silver Lake.

Under Hollister’s proposal, the Romanesque-style church built more than 80 years ago would contain a main-floor, approximately 4,000 square-foot restaurant and lounge area with  live entertainment and dancing;  a second-floor bar; a 2,000 square-foot outdoor pool/patio area and a rooftop garden and seating area, according to the hearing notice.  To make this work, Hollister needs several permits from the city, including one to operate a hotel within 500 feet of a residential zone and another to sell and serve a full line of alcoholic drinks.

The Planning Department Zoning Administrator who oversees the public hearing will decide whether or not those permits are issued.

Click here for the public hearing time and location and other details.

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  1. Looking forward to the transformation!

  2. Please–PLEASE–let this development happen. I’m fully in support!

  3. This project is complete nonsense. The developer cannot be trusted as one of her bars was closed down because she could NOT pay SALES TAX? Who does that?!!! http://la.eater.com/archives/2014/04/29/one_eyed_gypsy_shut_down_for_not_paying_sales_tax.php

    What’s going to happen to the neighborhood when this becomes abandoned like the Bates Motel… whoops, I think Dana Hollister proposed the exact same project there too… but let’s keep that between ourselves…

    • Save CPB is correct. If there is a shortage of hotel/motel rooms in Silver Lake, Dana Hollister needs to fix up that eyesore rat-trap that she owns (don’t know if she still does, but she did at one point) on Sunset first. This should become an adaptive reuse that is something less intrusive on the neighbors.

      • These solid ad hominem arguments have me convinced. This Dana Hollister sounds like a real monster, what with her having possibly proposed a similar project, or not, for a property that she might still own, or not. Let’s burn her at the stake and get something that the neighbors might really want; like a pillow factory or a nursing-shoe store. Those are nice and quiet.

        • Yeah! Arrr! Get her!!!! Arrrr! Yeah, PILLOW STORE! PILLOW STORE! Burn her! Burn her! She might have done something reeeeaaally awful! Get HER!

      • Echo Park resident

        Uh, if you read the most recent article on the site, you’d see she hasn’t owned the Bates Motel for several years; it’s the proposed site of the Frost-Chaddock development, and has been since around 2011.

  4. This will be dope if it happens! Stay home NIMBYs

  5. A boutique hotel no way – please I know the neighbors and what they really really want is a 24 hour boutique fitness center and bowling alley with lots of swing, which also serves the Best Fish Taco in the area 24/7 with the grill on the roof top.
    That something we are lacking in the Hood. No one wants people sleeping in a Church in their neighborhood.

  6. You go girl!! I hope the stroller brigade doesn’t derail this awesome addition to the neighborhood.

  7. I’m completely on board with this! Unlike the monstrous Frost Chaddock developments in the area (including the one they plan on doing at the Bates Motel) – this project is size appropriate, uses and improves an existing space, and gives the hood something it is seriously lacking: A hotel! Whether you like Dana or not, the truth is, unlike Beverly Hills Developers, she lives in Slake, she knows this neighborhood, and she’ll do something unique that many around here will rally around. Myself included. Go Dana!

  8. Not another STUPID BAR

    Anyone FOR this pricey hotel/bar/restaurant/hot spot/special event/night club/bordello, must not live near it.

    The Silver Lake Neighborhood Council does not support this project. And 300 area residents who signed a petition in opposition, do not need yet another damn bar, with drunken idiots waking them up at all hours as they already must endure from TWELVE other bars in the area (8 more than there are legally allowed in the tract), and taking away the last of already scarce parking from the 75% of residents within 500 feet of the church who do not have private parking, so who MUST park on the street. The city has not allowed residential permit parking for the area (would really need to be 24/7), but would only take parking away from the other 30 businesses within 500 feet of the church (11 of them on the same block as the church) that also do not provide adequate parking to support employees AND patrons, as typically defined by L.A. parking regulations according to each use and square footage. There has not been any REALISTIC parking solution presented. Ms Hollister initially stated she had a deal with St Francis for 66 spaces, that she never actually had. And she also keeps referring to a lot on Edge Cliff, but that has only 20 spaces. Realistically, about 200 spaces would be needed, which are not available within the legally required 750 feet.

    Most area residents know that any visiting families & friends would not afford to stay in a $300/nite hotel (only 25 rooms), so the hotel does not benefit them. The proposed hotel/bar would have an outdoor courtyard lounge, and an outdoor roof pool/lounge open after midnight, while neighbors are trying to sleep behind bedroom windows RIGHT NEXT DOOR and across the street. Serving alcohol within 100 feet of residences is also illegal (WHY are so many legal infringements allowed?).

    Ms Hollister (infamous for the “Bates Motel” failure) rented out the church to the Delusion Theater this past October, without any warning to the neighborhood, or to Delusion management about neighborhood concerns. Delusion was occupied by only about 50 people at once, and yet it amply demonstrated the problems by stripping parking away from a majority of residents who need it, and causing many late night disturbances. Now imagine regular, alcohol-fueled festivity with 350 people carrying on OUTSIDE on a residential street.

    Anyone residing, working or patronizing business within 500 feet of the church can attest to the ongoing, major problems with parking and late-night disturbances. Within 400 feet of the church, there are 80 apartment units with only 17 private parking spaces, and 7 houses without driveways. Regardless of ordinance or preference, the physical reality is that there is nowhere near enough parking CURRENTLY to support area residents AND business. So NOW add more businesses in the former Fandango and Naya locations (4 more proposed) which do not provide ANY parking, AND add hundreds of more people showing up (at least another 150 cars) for the hotel/bar with 4 special events per month, AND add in Farmer’s Market… This proposal is absurd.

    Area neighbors would appreciate an affordable hotel WITHOUT a bar/club, or perhaps a civic center, or a theater, or even more ugly condos, or anything that would actually reflect the creative spirit of the Silver Lake community that makes it the draw that it is in the first place. Does every cool place HAVE to be gentrified?

    • I can’t believe someone is actually worried about parking in this city. Can’t you seethe writing on the wall? Road diets, shitty public transport and adding more bike lanes every day… they want you to walk or ride a bike you devil driver you.

    • I’m not from the immediate neighborhood, but I couldn’t resist commenting on the first two voices of opposition for not really adding to the dialog beyond warnings that the developer can’t be trusted (in other news, great white sharks may eat you). You make some good points about the disruptiveness of the hotel as proposed, though, but I think most people understand that increases in the level of disruption from commercial areas suck when you live near them. Hopefully, it can be minimized, regardless of what gets built, and hopefully, those who invested in residential property there did so wisely.

      I will say that your ideas for businesses reflecting the creative spirit of Silver Lake don’t seem all that creative or helpful.. A hotel without a bar is just a motel, a civic center is a taxpayer boondoggle for which no one is clamoring, and a theater will introduce some intense parking problems like everything else, unless it’s bad theater that no one attends, and then, what’s the point? Now, Delusions? That was creative. Good luck to all of us and our varied desires.

    • AMJ? or BR?

  9. It really interesting how this all works, when a women is working on a project the dirt keeps flying and a lot of name calling and just false statement!
    Sure don’t see this much drama when a bunch of out of town businessmen come in and start actually tearing down buildings and mowing down everyone.
    Whats up with that

    • Echo Park resident

      Couldn’t agree with you more!

      I am way more enthusiastic to support an adaptive reuse project by an actual local than support some monstrous mixed-use modernist garbage proposed by Canadian developers with hundreds of properties around the world. One of these people is interested in Silver Lake, the other only sees dollar signs. Guess which one?

      A historic and beautiful building is going to be saved. Isn’t that better than million dollar condos? At least residents who can’t afford to stay at the hotel can still go to its restaurant, bar, or even just enjoy the beauty of the building.

      • Not another STUPID BAR

        Then I prefer this night club move in next door to wherever you live.

      • Not another STUPID BAR

        Wait, you think Hollister is not motivated by money?! She probably only intends to secure entitlements and flip it, as she likes to do.

  10. Dana apparently has no cash (One Eyed Gypsy is still closed) and no consideration for the residents who would have a nightclub right outside their bedroom windows. Taking on a project like this without providing a parking solution would be like building a house without a kitchen or bathroom — it’s a necessity — and building an all-hours commercial location on a residential street must entail respect for the occupants nearby.

    Dana deserves a lot of credit for what she’s brought to Silver Lake, but if she can’t figure out a way to move forward on this without addressing neighborhood concerns/proving that she’s not going to have to unload the property because of lack of funds, she should take her plans elsewhere. Hopefully those of us who can’t attend the meeting will get an update from the Eastsider.

  11. I laugh every time I read comments by people who say that everybody is going to start taking public transit or ride their bikes everywhere when all these large developments are built with not enough parking.

    This is LA, almost everyone has a car because the public transportation here is ridiculous. Why do the subways close down before midnight? Why did they reduce the amount of buses? It takes me a half hour just to get to the subway station on public transit! If I want to go to Pasadena, why would I spend more than an hour on public transportation when I can drive there in 20 minutes (except for rush hour)?? And weekends have reduced buses and trains.

    Why is there no bus anymore that goes straight across Sunset then across Hollywood Blvd?? Again, it’s ridiculous, the 2 streets become one street yet there’s no bus, you have to go down Sunset then transfer to get back up to Hollywood Blvd. Super time-consuming!

    This hotel and the Frost Chaddock apartments should all have at least 2 parking places per apartment or hotel room, which they don’t!! And that business about 40 spaces of “public parking” could cost people a lotta dough.

    The people who will move into these apartments or stay at this hotel will be well-monied and will have little motivation to save gas or avoid traffic by taking public transportation. I used to live in New York City where traffic is always a nightmare, but it doesn’t stop people from driving, and extreme gridlock is a common occurrence. The only difference is that NY has an amazing subway system!! That is where you don’t need a car. LA is not that place. I’m not going to spend 2 hours or more on a bus every time I want to go to Santa Monica, and at least 2 hours back. When and if they get that train built, that will be a huge relief.

    Williamsburg, in NY, where I lived when it was nice, has become a nightmare, which Silver Lake will surely become if all these greedy developers get their way.

    Anyway, I agree mostly with the above commenter “not another stupid bar”. The residents need consideration as pertains to noise and parking!

  12. Addendum

    p.s. I hate driving, so I really do wish I could take public transportation everywhere without it taking forever. It should be faster, not slower than driving!

    Also, I meant to mention that even though a lot of people ride their bikes and/or take public transportation, most of them still have cars that need to be parked somewhere. If they want to go somewhere outside of the neighborhood, especially at night, driving is often the only option. The new car services like Uber, etc., are helping, however, if you want to go hiking way up in the Santa Monica mountains on a Sunday, for instance, a car is necessary.

    If you work in the film business, like many thousands in LA, you cannot survive without a car. You usually have to be at work at an ungodly hour in an ungodly place with piles of equipment, and you can’t go home until you’ve worked an ungodly amount of hours and then you have have to be back at work the next day 9 hours after you’ve wrapped, no matter how far from home you are. And you can’t carpool easily if even you know somebody in your neighborhood on the same shoot, because everybody starts their workday and wraps at a different time.

    • Hi Alice…I’m also a former NYer and many in this neighborhood surprisingly are as well, at least East Coasters. Your frustration has some merit but I’m not sure you’re being entirely fair in your assumption of transit vs car here in LA.

      In NYC, yes there are subways but car travel is still faster(cabs), especially outside of rush as it is in any city in any place in the world. A car gives you point to point travel where a train must make multiple stops, that’s just the nature of transit. We also must take into account that the rail system here is very much under construction. There are (as we speak) 5 lines and extensions being built Expo, Crenshaw, Downtown Connector, Purple and Gold to Azusa. The total cost of these lines is well into the tens of billions. Why should we, if we’re investing that much public money into public infrastructure, continue to sink so much more money into accommodating and mitigating the environmental damages of the private automobile?

      It’s really all cultural behavior and perception. NYC doesn’t require parking minimums in the central city, therefore cars are at a disadvantage. The city also tolls you to enter Mid and Downtown Manhattan while driving, another disadvantage to the car. What if NYC required 2 spaces in every residential skyscraper in Manhattan, ceased tolls taken and provided a parking space for every employee that works in Lower Manhattan as well? Widened the BQE and the FDR to 10-lanes etc. I bring this up because you brought up that it’s easier to drive in LA than take PT. Why of course it is!! If at every turn the public is being asked to support the accommodation of more and more private automobiles.
      What actually is happening if it’s a mystery to you, is that the continued supporting of the private automobile in this city is unsustainable. To provide enough parking and accommodation of the car we’d have to pave over the Hollywood Hills and every residential street would have to be 6 lanes. A city this large that is still adding people can’t assume nor encourage new people to continue to bring their cars. We don’t have the resources, $$ nor space.

      Blame the generations before us who allowed the city to be taken over by Big Oil, Firestone and GM and rip out the largest streetcar system in the world! Frustratingly it looks as though we’re the ones who are going to have to piece this city back together again, where you can own a car but you take pt, bike and walk some of the time as well.

  13. Both Mitch and the Mayor came out for this. It seems like a go.

  14. RollWalkCrawl, you are correct about the fact that the politicians of yore really screwed up by letting themselves be bought out by GM, etc., and tearing out the super functional public transit system that was already in place.

    But until we have a super functional system in place in the present time, I’m not going to spend half of my life waiting for a bus and spending 2-3 hours to cross town, or not being able to work because I don’t have a vehicle, etc. Believe me, I drive as little as possible.

    And saying that what if New York provided parking places for everybody, etc., is ridiculous, because NY already has its super functional public transportation in place, and the city is based around that. LA will never ever have such an amazing system. But when it gets much, much better, and goes 24 hours a day, and I can anywhere I want to go within the county, I will then forgo my car.

    In the meantime, people have to get places while the politicians are playing games with our money and our public transportation. It’ll be another 10 years or more before the subway to the sea is built, if ever. And the developers can get around the rules for how many parking places they have to have in a building by paying off the politicians. There should be plenty of space in those new apartments for at least enough parking for the residents, but there aren’t.

    • Using Nextbus has entirely changed the game regarding waiting for a bus.
      Suggesting that NYC add more parking has nothing to do with its amazing (sometimes dirty and slow) pt system. I hear all the time in LA, that even if we build a wonderful transit system, people should have choices. Where are the choices so that you can drive sometimes and take pt other times in NYC? Paris? Tokyo? They reasonably don’t exist. Why? Because given those type choices and then asking the public to support those choices in $$$ would only encourage more people to drive making mobility on the streets impossible, that’s unless you widen them and make them less friendly to pedestrians and then continue to do so because you’ll just continue to attract more cars. But this is exactly what we’re doing here. We spend 1 billion $$$ + on a 405 carpool lane…1 LANE….when that $$$ could have been spent on extending the Purple Line, at least in theory to SM as you mentioned. All that I’m saying is where and when does this downward spiral end?
      A transit system like NYC’s is only built because there is a demand or projected demand. How do we instigate that demand if we continue to spend limited $$$ by making it easy for people like you to drive everywhere?

  15. If this development does not happen then say goodbye to the church as developers will rip it down and comply with all the parking structures and everything else. What do we want 25 hotel rooms or 50 condos. Why a bar ? There are plenty nearby. Permit parking is BS as we all pay to maintain the public street it is public not something the city gives permits to people who rent or buy knowing there is no parking.!

  16. Honestly, this is the best possible use for it. Reminds me of anything McMenamins does in Portland. Adaptive reuse is great. Calm down everyone.

  17. update please?

    Eastsider, how about an update on this? The public hearing happened two weeks ago? And then???

  18. Update please?!

  19. The Silver Lake NC is made of Airbnb people that crawled out of the woodwork and can’t run a meeting. Have you watched these people what a mess. Dimwits on parade. More flakes than in the movie Frozen and fewer ideas than George W Bush. Who is that twit that is always playing the piano pushing her own career over the community? This project will clean up a corner and with security and a crowd that can afford to stay there it will be better for all. This needs to happen.

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