Historical Lytton Savings Bank Building is Now a Pile of Rubble

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Photos by Paulo Murillo for WEHO TIMES

“In April 2021, demolition commenced on Lytton Savings, marking an end to this Modernist Hollywood landmark,” reads a current update on Los Angeles Conservancy website regarding the historical Chase Bank / Lytton Savings Bank, located at 8150 Sunset Boulevard. Although technically in the city of Los Angeles, the building known for its folded zigzag plate rooftop was embraced by many WeHo residents as a historical landmark.

Photos by Paulo Murillo for WEHO TIMES

The LA Conservancy put up a good fight to save the building designed by architect Kurt Meyer in 1960. In May, 2018, the Conservancy petitioned the Supreme Court to review a Court of Appeal’s decision that overturned a 2017 Los Angeles County Superior Court ruling in favor of the Conservancy, which blocked the City of Los Angeles from destroying the building.

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In June 13, 2018, a decision by the Supreme Court of California to deny hearing a petition filed by the Los Angeles Conservancy effectively ended all legal efforts to stop the needless demolition.

In late 2020 a revised plan for the redevelopment of this site was unveiled, which still called to scrap the building.

Photos by Paulo Murillo for WEHO TIMES

The fight to save the building was not good enough. The building had its day with a wrecking crew last week. A tall fence with a thick tarp has been erected around the construction site to hide the destruction from public view. However, photos exclusive to WEHO TIMES show that the historical landmark was reduced to rubble within a matter of days. There is not much left but a pile of concrete and debris to make way for a new 57,300 square feet retail and restaurant space.

Photos by Paulo Murillo for WEHO TIMES
Photos by Paulo Murillo for WEHO TIMES

The Los Angeles Conservancy describes the now gone Lytton Savings Bank building as a striking departure from traditional bank design when it opened in 1960 with its dramatic, folded plate concrete roof and glass-walled banking floor.

“As financial institutions nationwide analyzed the need for progressive banking methods following World War II, architects responded by radically reinventing the bank’s form, reads a post on their website. “Lytton Savings (as part of larger Lytton Center) typified these national postwar banking trends through its modern architectural design, transparency, and integrated art component, and is one of Los Angeles’ earliest remaining examples of this transformative shift in postwar-era bank design.”

Photos by Paulo Murillo for WEHO TIMES
Photos by Paulo Murillo for WEHO TIMES

The Lytton Savings and larger Lytton Center occupied the former site of the Garden of Allah. The storied Hollywood inn with surrounding villas was purchased by Lytton in 1959. The Garden was razed to make way for the bank and now the bank has met the same fate.

The new Townscape Partners project was designed by Frank Gehry, the architect who created the Walt Disney Concert Hall in downtown Los Angeles. The completion of the new construction is set for some time in 2023.

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Paulo Murillo is Editor in Chief and Publisher of WEHO TIMES. He brings over 20 years of experience as a columnist, reporter, and photo journalist. Murillo began his professional writing career as the author of “Love Ya, Mean It,” an irreverent and sometimes controversial West Hollywood lifestyle column for FAB! newspaper. His work has appeared in numerous print and online publications, which include the “Hot Topic” column in Frontiers magazine, where he covered breaking news and local events in West Hollywood. He can be reached at editor@wehotimes.com
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R C
R C
3 months ago

I despise Frank Gehry. He’s an arrogant no-talent derivative hack. His only gift is bamboozling people with money to build his dreck.

Ray
Ray
5 months ago

The “tarp” is part of a safety fence which was put up around the parameter of the building and parking lot for safety reasons, not to “hide the destruction from public view”.

VoteThemOut
VoteThemOut
5 months ago

Everything about this post is disturbing. The giant fortress is tellling that they know what they are doing is wrong, otherwise why hide? The dirt pile makes me really sad.

Angry Gay Pope
5 months ago

The Garden of Allah it was not. I won’t miss that 1960s look.