Deal Cuts Size of Shopping Plaza at Tail O' Cock Site

A final compromise over development of a shopping center at the site of a landmark restaurant in Studio City has been reached between a builder and Los Angeles city officials.

Developer Herbert M. Piken will cut the size of his project nearly in half and give it what City Councilman Michael Woo called a softer, suburban look. The $14-million center will replace the defunct Tail O' the Cock restaurant, which operated for 40 years at the 2.3-acre Ventura Boulevard site.

Homeowners in Studio City and Sherman Oaks objected to Piken's first plan because they thought the 86,000-square-foot project was too large, and they disliked the proposed chrome-and-marble exterior and an unusual metal "space frame" covering. Homeowners also said it would wipe out a heavily used alley.

The new design is two stories and 46,000 square feet.

It has canvas awnings and brass accessories, and it preserves the alley.

"It will have suburban elegance rather than the glitzy Rodeo Drive look," Piken said.

Woo said the new design is a "high-quality, drastically scaled-down project that will benefit the entire community."

Piken said he hopes to begin construction in two months.

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