On the exterior, the familiar art deco 1930 facade at Beverly and Fairfax housing the Fairfax Theater and assorted small shops will look somewhat the same, but you won’t be able to catch a bargain movie there any longer, and the gigantic CBS billboard atop will soon be history. The LA City Planning Commission has approved the demolition of the guts of the property to make way for a five story mixed-use development with 71 housing units, 11,000 sq ft of ground floor retail space, a pool on the rooftop, and four levels of parking underground.
The Fairfax Theater had been struggling for years to stay open and was in serious decline. Not deemed worthy of saving as a historic theater by the City’s Cultural Heritage Commission, local residents and theater preservationists protested the planned development in 2010, blaming the owner of “demolition by neglect”.
The Planning Commission approved the project on March 8th, altering the use of the property and protecting the street facing facades, including the terrazzo flooring in the entryway and the theater’s original spire. The marquee will be removed. It now goes to City Council which is expected to approve the Commission’s determinations, and make way for an already-congested corner to become busier than ever.