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by Matt Alderton | March 06, 2015
Venue developer AEG has big plans for L.A. LIVE, the $3 billion sports and entertainment district in downtown Los Angeles, it announced yesterday: Later this year, it said, it will commence construction on an expansion of the existing JW Marriott L.A. LIVE and The Ritz-Carlton Los Angeles hotels.

"AEG's continued investment in our downtown will further the momentum created by the development of STAPLES Center and L.A. LIVE," said Herb Wesson, president of the Los Angeles City Council. "The continuation of this enormously successful public-private partnership will signal the launch of the much anticipated renovation of the convention center while furthering Los Angeles' international reputation and prominence."

The planned expansion will consist of a new 38-story, 755-room hotel tower connected to the JW Marriott and Ritz-Carlton by skybridge, not to mention over 75,000 square feet of new meeting space at the existing West Parking Garage "Event Deck." Together, the three hotels and enhanced Event Deck will offer 1,756 rooms and over 200,000 square feet of function space, constituting the second largest hotel in California.

"When combined with all of the current offerings of L.A. LIVE, this new development will truly elevate the campus to become one of the preeminent meeting and convention destinations in the world," said Ernest Wooden Jr., president and CEO of the Los Angeles Tourism & Convention Board. "Additional hotel inventory, especially around the convention center, is critically important to our ability to attract larger conventions and this 755-room expansion is a positive step forward to help ensure our inventory remains competitive."

Construction on the project will begin in late 2015 and conclude in 2018.