News & Advocacy

City’s Proposed Lawsuit Settlement Places Landmark at Risk

September 4, 2018

Santa Monica’s iconic Home Savings building at 26th and Wilshire, a historic landmark, is in jeopardy due to the City’s proposed settlement of a legal challenge brought by the property owner.  Noted for its dazzling mosaic of a beach scene, set into marble walls highlighted with gold trim, the building integrates public artwork into the architecture unlike any other landmark.

Photo: Historic Resources Group

After a closed session on August 28, 2018, City Council unanimously supported the City Attorney’s recommendation to settle the lawsuit under the following terms:

  • The City will set aside the historic landmark designation and prohibit any new application for designation for the next 5 years,
  • The owner will preserve and donate four pieces of artwork from the building to the City or a nonprofit organization, and
  • The City will pay the owner $250,000.

“The Conservancy has consistently supported the designation of Home Savings, and made a strongly-worded statement of that position to Council before the closed session commenced. We believe this proposed settlement, which appears to remove all due process protections from the landmark, would do irreparable damage to our cultural heritage and the credibility of our Historic Preservation Program,” cautioned Conservancy Board president, Carol Lemlein.

For more information on the Santa Monica Home Savings and the events leading up to this settlement, click here.

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