Los Angeles Historic Building Built in 1924 Was in a Largely Smoldering Fire

Mandy Huang
By Mandy Huang
October 5, 2018USshare

An abandoned two-story church near downtown Los Angeles was in a largely smoldering fire around 6:25 a.m. on Thursday, Oct. 4.

It is located at 720 W. Washington Blvd., University Park, which is in the South Los Angeles neighborhood. This building was once housed the first full-service mortuary in LA. Local people used to call this section of Washington Boulevard “Mortuary Row” since there were more than 20 mortuaries in the area in the 1930s.

It is a Mission-style old building built in 1924, and designed by the famous Milwaukee Building Co. It was also on the list of historic cultural monuments in the 1990s.

More than 100 firefighters tried to contain the fire in this 19,811-square-foot building. Washington Boulevard was closed in both directions for about eight hours, according to LAFD’s tweets.

Thick smoke was hovering over the nearby busy 10 and 110 freeways making morning traffic even worse.

In fact, Los Angeles Councilman Gil Cedillo wanted to convert this building into affordable housing units so he introduced a motion this February. It is now red-tagged as unfit and unsafe for human occupancy.
There were no injuries and the surrounding structures are also unharmed. The cause of the fire is still under investigation.

Fire ripped through the abandoned church near downtown L.A., destroying the historic building.
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