Marilyn Monroe’s former home in Los Angeles declared a historic landmark to save it from demolition

LOS ANGELES (AP) — Fans of Marilyn Monroe have won a battle to preserve their footprint in Los Angeles and are one step closer to seeing a towering statue of the silver screen icon remain in Palm Springs.

The Los Angeles home where Monroe briefly lived and died has been declared a historic cultural landmark, while a decision by the Palm Springs Planning Commission has increased the chances that an 28-foot-tall statue will be named “Forever Marilyn” will stay in place.

The Los Angeles City Council voted Wednesday for historic designation after a long battle over whether the house in the upscale Brentwood neighborhood would be demolished, the Justice Department said. The Los Angeles Times reported.

The current owners live next door and wanted to demolish the house to expand their property. However, the city council unanimously decided to save it.

“There is no other person or place in the city of Los Angeles as iconic as Marilyn Monroe and her Brentwood home,” regional council representative Traci Park said before the vote.

Monroe purchased the house for $75,000 and died there a few months later, on August 4, 1962, of an apparent overdose. The current owners, Brinah Milstein and Roy Bank, purchased the house for $8.35 million and obtained a demolition permit, but have faced opposition.

They say the house has changed so much over the years that it is no longer historic and has become a nuisance in the neighborhood due to tourist traffic.

The process that led to the designation was “biased, unconstitutional and rigged,” Peter C. Sheridan, an attorney for Milstein and Bank, said in a statement to The Associated Press.

Sheridan claimed Park and his staff were unresponsive to landlords’ efforts to find a solution and ignored opposition from civic groups and landlords.

The attorney also said the city had “granted dozens of permits to more than 14 different former owners to modify the home through numerous renovations, resulting in nothing remaining reflecting Ms. Monroe’s brief stay there 60 years ago.

In Palm Springs, the “Forever Marilyn” statue depicts Monroe in the famous flowing dress scene from “The Seven Year Itch.” It has been moved around the United States and elsewhere, including to Palm Springs, and is now back. A hotel group that owns the statue wants it to remain in place permanently, but some residents oppose that.

A technical decision on the location by the planning commission on Wednesday marked a step toward keeping the statue, The Desert Sun reported. The matter will continue before the Palm Springs City Council in the future.

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News Source : apnews.com

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