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Melville Klauber House

In 1979 SOHO's hardest fought preservation battle ended with the demolition of the 1907 Melville Klauber House, designed by Irving Gill and Frank Mead. Despite lawsuits, countersuits, State Supreme Court hearings, proposals from a youth hostel, plans to move it to Heritage Park or into Balboa Park, and even the airplane crash death of the developer, nothing could stop the loss of this high-profile icon, universally considered to be Gill's best remaining work, after the loss of LA's Dodge House.

Photo courtesy Coons collection

As has become all too common, more energy was put into the demolition scheme than in getting secure financing for its replacement. Those who remembered were taunted by a vacant lot at 6th and Redwood for more than a decade until this condo tower emerged. The lot across Redwood, site of another Gill house wrecked that year, remains the unsightly graveyard of another failed project.

Photo by Bruce Coons


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2476 San Diego Avenue · San Diego CA 92110 · Phone (619) 297-9327
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