Share This Page

Geologists say Hollywood project may sit on quake fault

| Saturday, Nov. 23, 2013, 8:06 p.m.
A geological report suggests a $200 million residential and commercial development now under construction in Hollywood might be located above an earthquake fault that scientists say could produce a magnitude-7.0 earthquake.

LOS ANGELES — City officials missed signs in a geological report that suggest a $200 million residential and commercial development under construction in Hollywood might be above an earthquake fault, according to city records and interviews.

The information was contained in reports written by a geotechnical engineering consultant hired by the developer of the Blvd6200 project and filed with the city. The report, obtained by the Los Angeles Times under the California Public Records Act, said groundwater levels varied by as much as 30 feet below the property.

Geologists generally consider uneven groundwater levels in California a strong indicator of an earthquake fault.

The city Department of Building and Safety did not raise concerns about an earthquake fault when it reviewed and approved the report in 2007 without requiring any in-depth seismic study.

California state geologist John Parrish said the uneven groundwater cited in the report suggests that the project could sit on top of the Hollywood fault, which is capable of producing a devastating 7.0 earthquake.

“One of the most common indicators of the existence of a fault is the presence of an offset groundwater table,” Parrish said. “It can be logically construed that the break in groundwater table elevations is because of the presence of a fault.”

The Hollywood fault has been known for decades. But California geologists have not yet formally certified it as a fault zone, and the law is not in force in Hollywood until they do.

TribLIVE commenting policy

You are solely responsible for your comments and by using TribLive.com you agree to our Terms of Service.

We moderate comments. Our goal is to provide substantive commentary for a general readership. By screening submissions, we provide a space where readers can share intelligent and informed commentary that enhances the quality of our news and information.

While most comments will be posted if they are on-topic and not abusive, moderating decisions are subjective. We will make them as carefully and consistently as we can. Because of the volume of reader comments, we cannot review individual moderation decisions with readers.

We value thoughtful comments representing a range of views that make their point quickly and politely. We make an effort to protect discussions from repeated comments either by the same reader or different readers

We follow the same standards for taste as the daily newspaper. A few things we won't tolerate: personal attacks, obscenity, vulgarity, profanity (including expletives and letters followed by dashes), commercial promotion, impersonations, incoherence, proselytizing and SHOUTING. Don't include URLs to Web sites.

We do not edit comments. They are either approved or deleted. We reserve the right to edit a comment that is quoted or excerpted in an article. In this case, we may fix spelling and punctuation.

We welcome strong opinions and criticism of our work, but we don't want comments to become bogged down with discussions of our policies and we will moderate accordingly.

We appreciate it when readers and people quoted in articles or blog posts point out errors of fact or emphasis and will investigate all assertions. But these suggestions should be sent via e-mail. To avoid distracting other readers, we won't publish comments that suggest a correction. Instead, corrections will be made in a blog post or in an article.