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Silver Lake home rejected as city historic-cultural landmark

ArchitectureArts and CultureHuman Interest

Los Angeles Cultural Heritage commissioners voted Thursday to reject a proposal that would have designated a Silver Lake home the city's 1,038th historic-cultural landmark.

Neighbors and other preservationists had urged the panel to preserve the Waverly Drive residence designed by pioneering Chinese American architect Gilbert L. Leong.

Last year, a Beverly Hills developer purchased the so-called Tirado house — built in 1959 for Dr. Miguel Tirado and his wife — and announced plans to build five three-story houses on the lot through the city's small-lot subdivision ordinance.

Leong, known for his design work in the Chinatown area and for a residential tract built in the 1950s in Winnetka, was an American-born architect who often included Asian touches in his projects.

Experts in the city's Office of Historic Resources who evaluated a landmark designation request filed by Silver Lake-area residents concluded that the Waverly Drive dwelling was not among the most notable examples of Leong's work.

Taking that recommendation to heart, commission members voted 5 to 0 to deny monument status to the house.

Such a designation would have delayed development of the property for a year and could have forced the developer to file an environmental impact report, according to city officials.

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bob.pool@latimes.com

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