Marilyn Monroe House Saved From Wrecking Ball, Named LA Cultural Landmark

The Brentwood home where Marilyn Monroe died is now safe from the wrecking ball. The Los Angeles City Council voted on Wednesday to grant historical status to the site, which prevents the current owners from following through with a planned demolition.

Voting on the motion, which Councilwoman Traci Park introduced in September, was delayed until local residents were assured that the designation would not adversely affect their privacy and safety.

The home is at 12305 W 5th Helena Dr., where the screen icon was found dead on August 5, 1962. She was 36.

Park said on Wednesday, “We have an opportunity to do something today that should have been done 60 years ago … there is likely no woman in history or culture who captures the imagination of the public the way Marilyn Monroe did. Even all these years later, her story still resonates and inspires many of us today.”

The vote was 12-0, with backing from both the land use management subcommittee and the cultural heritage commission, according to media reports.

Last September, Park argued that less than 3% of historic designations in the city are associated with women and that letting the Monroe house be demolished would be a “devastating blow.” As part of her obligation to homeowners in the neighborhood, the Councilwoman introduced another motion to evaluate tour bus restrictions on neighboring streets.

The current owners, Brinah Milstein and her “Flea Market Flip” producer husband Roy Bank, filed court papers in May that stated the city broke the law in revoking its previously issued demolition permit. A judge ruled in favor of the city.

The pair paid $8.35 million for the house in July 2023. A current Zillow listing estimates the home is now worth $8.67 million.

Their attorney, Peter C. Sheridan, sent a statement to TheWrap that, “Neither [Traci Park] nor her staff have worked closely with the owners, throughout this process or anytime else, to relocate the house to allow for public access.”

The statement continued, “Ms. Park has ignored the fact that her constituents — civic and homeowner’s groups in the community — are adamantly against the designation of the home” and added that 14 prior owners were permitted to remodel the home, “resulting in there being nothing left reflecting Ms. Monroe’s brief time there 60 years ago.”

Sheridan concluded, “The designation today was yet another step in an admittedly biased, unconstitutional and rigged process, as set forth in the owners’ lawsuit. Traci Park’s actions today and throughout the process, disregarding the interests of her constituents and the facts and merits, demonstrate that no one’s home or investment is safe.”

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