News & Advocacy

Landmarks Commission Report

June 1, 2019

by Ruthann Lehrer and Carol Lemlein, Advocacy Co-Chairs

In February, demolition of 516 Colorado Avenue (the former Angel’s Attic) was considered by the Landmarks Commission. Despite the fact that the Commission had previously rejected the owner’s nomination for landmark designation, several individuals testified that it might qualify as a Structure of Merit. Following the new process for consideration of demolitions, the Commission voted that there was credible evidence to justify further investigation and a future public hearing.

The Conservancy’s nomination of John Parkinson’s residence at 808 Woodacres Road was the focus of a lengthy public hearing at the March meeting. Two independent historic preservation firms (engaged by a neighbor who supports the nomination plus the City’s consultant) all agreed that the residence met five of the six criteria for landmark designation.

808 Woodacres Road. Photo: Michael Locke

This house is the only extant example of iconic architect John Parkinson’s residences that he designed for himself. Parkinson is most noted for designing the LA Memorial Coliseum, Bullocks Wilshire, LA City Hall (a collaboration), Union Station and numerous other commercial and institutional buildings in downtown Los Angeles and at USC. (Attend our July 14 lecture to learn more about his work.) The property owner opposes the designation, believing that it will cause a significant reduction in the property’s appraised value. A continuance was granted and the nomination will be heard again in June.

Finally, the Craftsman bungalow located at 610 California Street, which had been the subject of a demolition application, was approved for designation as a Structure of Merit by City Council. The unanimous decision was made in response to an appeal submitted by Conservancy Board member Nina Fresco, after the Landmarks Commission failed to take action on the Conservancy’s nomination due to a procedural challenge.

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