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AEG, Officials To Break Ground On ‘l.a. live’

(CelebrityAccess MediaWire) — The Los Angeles area’s biggest redevelopment project to date will break ground this afternoon adjacent to the AEG-owned and operated STAPLES Center.

Los Angeles Mayor Antonio Villaraigosa will join AEG President and CEO Tim Leiweke, LA Councilwoman Jan Perry, LA Inc. President and CEO Mark Liberman, Central City Association President and CEO Carol Schatz, Recording Academy President Neil Portnow, Nokia VP of Marketing Jo Harlow, and actor/Conga Room owner Jimmy Smits for the ceremonial groundbreaking of “l.a. live,” a more than $1 billion, four million square-foot Downtown Los Angeles sports and entertainment district.

Grammy Award winning artist Poncho Sanchez will perform at the ceremony.

AEG has also promised the announcement of several additional business partners on the project.

Los Angeles labor leaders have called it “a much needed economic shot in the arm for Los Angeles’ working men and women,” and look forward to the completion of the project.

“l.a. live will create good union jobs for Los Angeles working men and women, now and in the foreseeable future,” Martin Ludlow, Executive Secretary-Treasurer of the Los Angeles County Federation of Labor, said in a statement. “l.a. live is a model for future large scale developments and underscores the importance of business and labor working together to help grow the regional economy.”

The project is expected to generate more than 5.500 jobs initially, and in excess of 13,300 jobs over the course of construction. The finished district will include a 1,200-room hotel, a 7,000-seat concert venue, restaurants and retail, a movie theater, housing, parking and office space.

As a commitment to the local labor community, AEG and the l.a. live partners have agreed to maintain a goal of 70-percent of the jobs in the project as living wages jobs, or jobs covered by a collective bargaining agreement. It has also agreed to provide job training assistance to area residents and has adopted the City’s Worker Retention Policy.

Jim Garner, Business Manager of Iron Workers Local 433, said in a statement, “It is fantastic that we can have a project of this size in the Los Angeles area so that local people can work where they live and earn a wage they are entitled to.”

“l.a. live is a much needed shot in the arm for LA’s economy and for working men and women,” said Sergio Rason, Business Manager of Laborers Local 300. “This project is a good project all around. It benefits workers, residents and will attract the kind of tourism that will grow LA’s economy.” –by CelebrityAccess Staff Writers