When Los Angeles’ Red Line subway was completed in 2000, its northernmost station appeared desolate above ground.
People arriving in North Hollywood on the underground train rode up a grand escalator past tile murals to find themselves on an expanse of asphalt parking lots, where commuters could rush through free of temptation to linger over so much as a cup of coffee. It looked like what it was — the end of the line.
Thousands of apartments and some plush office buildings have been added nearby in intervening years, but the prime real estate around the portal is still mostly bare, waiting on a long-imagined development where people might live, work, shop for groceries and have drinks or dinner.
That vision is finally taking shape, with developers and transit officials set to apply Monday for city permission to build a $1-billion mixed-use complex that would surround the subway entrance and adjacent hub for connecting bus routes, including the well-traveled Orange Line to Warner Center and Chatsworth.
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