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Brentwood's Barry Building Could Come Down

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[First photo via jasoncalacanis]

The Barry Building, former home of Dutton's Brentwood bookstore, fine example of mid-century office and retail design, and a Historic-Cultural Monument, has been on a preservation rollercoaster for the past few years, and it looks like it's heading into another dip--there are plans to tear the building down and replace it with a retail complex. Flip-flopping owner Charles Munger originally planned to build condos at the site, but changed his mind to retail in 2007, and then fought HCM designation for the building before he supported it. The Barry Building became an HCM in 2007, but as everyone is learning, that doesn't make demolition impossible, just a little tougher. On Tuesday night, developers presented their plans to locals.

Internet entrepreneur and Brentwood homeowner Jason Calacanis sends in a report from the meeting. In an email to Curbed, he writes:

"[Brentwood Homeowners Association] heard a presentation by the architects involved in the Barry Building. The owner plans on knocking down the Barry Building, and the two of the homes behind it, in order to put up a two story, open air type market that would be similar in function to the Brentwood Country Mart (i.e. a bunch of little stores and outdoor space). The design is very nice in my opinion, however the plan to demolish two homes in order to build 350 parking spots--and encroach on the residential space--is troubling.

Clearly the project could be done with knocking down homes, and as such the BHA voted to right an appeal on behalf of homeowners that would encourage the owner of the space to come up with a less encroaching plan.

Additionally, there were many people (15 or so) in the audience who were nearby residents who are opposed to the plan due to the homes being demoed and the additionally traffic/noise that a mall of this size would bring.

A handful of folks seemed to care about the historic designation of the building, however most believed that the building would not be saved."

A rep for Councilman Bill Rosendahl adds, "The BHA voted to write comments into the City as part of the scoping period asking for additional alternatives to be included in the Draft [Environmental Impact Report], taking into consideration a number of community concerns."
· Presentation about new Barry Building at Brentwood Homeowners Association meeting [Calacanis.com]
· CurbedWire Bonus: Preservation Updates [Curbed LA]
· Dutton's Dances Closer to Landmark Status [Curbed LA]
· Dutton's Brentwood Saved (For Now) [Curbed LA]

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