Please help secure historic status for Fickett WeHo Apts

ARCHITECTURE AND PRESERVATION NEWS for the Los Angeles Conservancy Modern Committee (ModCom) and other Mid Century Modern, Googie, International, Art Deco, 20th Century design

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socalgecko
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Joined: Sat Aug 14, 2010 4:29 pm
Location: West Hollywood, CA
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Please help secure historic status for Fickett WeHo Apts

Postby socalgecko » Sat Aug 14, 2010 4:42 pm

During his life Edward Fickett designed 37 buildings for West Hollywood, only 5 of which are left at the moment. The West Hollywood pool & community center, and the West Hollywood Library, the first library in the world designed to allow the use of natural sunlight, have been a core part of the community for decades. These buildings are or will soon be torn down during the renovation of West Hollywood Park. Scandia (Sunset & Doheny) is being torn down next week as part of the Sunset Doheny project. Fickett won three awards for his building on Hayvenhurst that was torn down to make room for a community garden. And the owner of Fickett's apartment building at 1127 Horn Avenue is trying to appeal the city's recent historical designation for reasons unknown.

The second building he built in West Hollywood, an apartment building at 1128 Larrabee Street, is now under consideration for historic preservation. One of the reasons is because of all the buildings above are gone or threatened. The second reason is that city hall recently caught wind of rumors that the owner may be trying to sell it to a developer who wants to raze the building.

1128 Larrabee was designed and erected in 1953. Some of its notable features include barrel-vaulted ceilings in the four upper units, large balconies, and a backyard for one of the lower units. The angled roof has exposed beam edging featured in the facade. Most units have large living rooms with south-facing walls that are almost entirely made up of custom solid and/or slatted "lanai-style" windows to provide views of the Los Angeles basin (now mostly blocked by the IAC building.) The apartments feature his innovative space-saving designs to utilize as much usable space as possible with pocket doors and sliding door closets.

The building's greatest feature is considered to be that it was thoughtfully designed to make use of ample outdoor space; either a patio or balcony. The living areas virtually blend into these outdoor areas thanks to the large groupings of windows. The garden walkways along the north and south boundaries create a casual buffer-zone between 1128 and its neighbors. Both of the ground floor units feature an unusual design for apartments: Multiple entrances from the front, back, and even the bedrooms open to outside areas.

Put simply, there aren't many buildings like this left, let alone ones designed by such a noted architect. Edward FIckett created landmarks in Southern California, most notably Dodger Stadium and the Los Angeles Police Academy, and his buildings deserve preservation. Please help convince the West Hollywood City Council to designate 1128 Larrabee as a historical resource by writing a letter of support. Letters can be faxed to the attention of Joycie Fickett (the architect's widow) at 310-859-3824 or they can be mailed directly to the West Hollywood Community Development Department at:

West Hollywood City Hall
Community Development Dept
Attn: Antonio Castillo
8300 Santa Monica Boulevard
West Hollywood, CA 90069-4313

All letters, regardless of how they are sent, should include the above address at the top. Please try to submit your letters by August 30, 2010.

And from all of the residents at 1128 Larrabee, Thank you.

SFG
Modern Socialite
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Joined: Mon Sep 17, 2007 9:40 pm
Location: Long Beach, CA
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Postby SFG » Mon Aug 16, 2010 10:12 am

This is something we've been following and I'll be sure to include this info about letters of support on tonight's agenda for the ModCom general meeting. Thanks for the update on this issue!

socalgecko
Modern Groupie
Posts: 2
Joined: Sat Aug 14, 2010 4:29 pm
Location: West Hollywood, CA
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Update on 1128 Preservation

Postby socalgecko » Sat Sep 11, 2010 2:48 pm

I just heard from West Hollywood City Hall that as of Friday, they had only received two letters supporting the preservation of this building. They have extended the deadline to submit letters until September 16, so if you can, please help us.

Also, the hearing before the Historic Preservation Commission is on September 27 at Plummer Park. If you can attend to show your support, we would be most grateful!
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