Costa Mesa : Fair Board Hearing to Discuss Larger Hotel

The issue of whether to build a larger hotel on the Orange County Fairgrounds will be discussed in a public hearing by the Fair Board on a Tuesday morning. A proposed Ramada Inn has been approved for at least 150 rooms, but the nine-member board will consider plans to expand the hotel to 215 rooms in a three- to four-story building, according to fair spokeswoman Jill Lloyd.

"The decision has actually been made to have one (hotel)," Lloyd said.

An environmental impact report for the 150-room hotel was approved in 1978, Lloyd said. To allow expansion of the project, however, fair officials must conduct a "focused EIR" that considers individual concerns, she said. Any concerns expressed at the meeting Tuesday will be studied by the fair board staff, which would report to the board later.

Under the fair board master plan, the hotel will be on a five-acre parcel in the southeast corner of the fairgrounds, near the intersection of Newport Boulevard and Fair Drive.

If the expanded hotel is approved, construction, which is expected to take about a year, could begin in January, 1986, Lloyd said.

Costa Mesa has no jurisdiction over the project because it would be on state-owned land, she said. However, construction plans still will be reviewed by the city Planning Commission and City Council to get their contributions, Lloyd said.

The fair board's meeting is scheduled for 8:30 a.m. in the Memorial Gardens on the fairgrounds.

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