Marilyn Monroe's house saved from demolition - for now

Marilyn Monroe's former home has been saved from demolition for the foreseeable future after being declared a historic cultural monument

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Marilyn Monroe's house may have been saved
Marilyn Monroe's house may have been saved

Marilyn Monroe's former home has been saved from demolition for the foreseeable future.

The Hollywood legend purchased the 1929-built Spanish-style hacienda on 5th Helena Drive in Los Angeles just six months before she was found dead in August 1962 at the age of 36 but in September, a permit was approved to tear down the home.

However, on Thursday (18.01.24), the Los Angeles Cultural Heritage Commission voted unanimously to declare the property a historic cultural monument.

The commissioners noted that although Marilyn only spend a few months living at the property - which is where she was found dead in 1962, aged 36 - it was the only home she ever bought for herself, People magazine reports.

However, the house's future isn't secured forever as designation as a historic cultural monument "does not guarantee that the property cannot be demolished" in Los Angeles, but does allow the commission to delay demolition for 180 days while other opportunities for preservation are determined.

The next step to save the property would be a review of the nomination by the city's Planning and Use Committee and then the LA City Council.

Designating the home an historic site also will not stop any idea of potentially relocating the building to a more central location to be viewed easier by the public than its current neighbourhood, but that would be a lengthy and expensive process and it is not known if the house would be able to be moved.

Scott Fortner, who hosts the 'All Things Marilyn Podcast', had played a key role in attempts to saving the house as a member of the Monroe Preservation Group, who were able to uncover historical significance to the property that dated before its iconic resident moved in.

He told People magazine: "Our efforts and research, which was shared with today's deciding body, concluded that famed historic Los Angeles architect Harbin Hunter not only lived at the home, but he also very likely designed it...

The evidence lies in the famous tiles at the front door of the house, which read, "Cursum Perficio," the hunter family motto, which translates to "I will persevere."

"Our group, which consists of authors April VeVea, Gary Vitacco-Robles and Elisa Jordan, film producer and director Remi Gangarossa, and historians Kelly Lecroix and I, are thrilled to have participated in the process to have Marilyn’s home be recommended for a Historic Cultural Monument designation by the Los Angeles Cultural Heritage Commission today.”

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