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Appeal to block demolition of Steve Jobs' mansion dropped

post #1 of 86
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Preservationists who for years have fought Apple Chief Executive Steve Jobs and prevented him from demolishing an aging California mansion have finally thrown in the towel.

Steve Jobs has owned the Jackling house since 1984, and has been trying to raze the building and replace it with something more modern since 2001. But for years the group Uphold Our Heritage has attempted to preserve the house as a historical landmark.

The dispute seemed to be coming to an end in March, when a judge upheld a demolition permit for Jobs that was first approved in May 2009. This week, The Alamanac noted that Uphold Our Heritage had dropped its appeal of the permit.

The organization made the decision after Jobs reportedly did not respond to a proposal from two nearby Woodside, Calif., residents who offered to dismantle the house and move it about two miles away. The attorney for Uphold Our Heritage said it was a "really great proposal" in which the two residents offered to pay "a very large part of the relocation and restoration costs."

Jason and Magalli Yoho planned to live in the mansion and open it to the public once a year, but they needed Jobs to contribute financially to the moving of the house.



The sprawling mansion has 30 rooms, 14 bedrooms and 13-and-a-half bathrooms. Last year, AppleInsider posted an extensive photo gallery of the home, which was discovered by a photographer with its gates, windows and doors wide open.

In 2008, Jobs attempted to prove that it would cost $5 million more to restore the mansion than build his new home. The home was built in 1929 for copper mining mogul Daniel Jackling. Jobs bought the home in 1984 and lived in it for 10 years before renting it out. It has remained vacant since 2000.
post #2 of 86
The mob has spoken. And silenced.

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post #3 of 86
OU(c)H?
post #4 of 86
Somebody should write a script for the mansion that SJ is going to get torn down. Great setting for a horror flick?
post #5 of 86
Why would anybody care?
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post #6 of 86
Yay! Down with the old Jackling dump!!!

And up with the new iJackling Pad.
post #7 of 86
Are

We

Done

Yet?
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post #8 of 86
Quote:
Originally Posted by Suddenly Newton View Post

The mob has spoken. And silenced.

These are probably the same people who try to stop cell towers from being erected in SF too. So they are the ones responsible for poor reception in the valley.
post #9 of 86
Quote:
they needed Jobs to contribute financially to the moving of the house.

\

I know Jobs has a shitload of money, but I'm pretty sure his neighbors aren't hurting financially either.

"I heard you're going to demolish your garden shed. Can you please give it to me? Oh, and help me pay for moving it."
post #10 of 86
Quote:
Originally Posted by lkrupp View Post

These are probably the same people who try to stop cell towers from being erected in SF too. So they are the ones responsible for poor reception in the valley.

Don't worry about that poor reception, ATT is on the job. I just got an update for my Mark The Spot app. It's going to have improved graphics to look better on a retina display. Just what you want to see when you drop a call. Rethink possible.
post #11 of 86
Has this report got anything to do with Apple's new iYawn?



post #12 of 86
Finally after 26 Years!! This is really ridiculous. And Historic come on!! it doesn't look like more than 50-80 Years old. I hope for steve, he finds a great architect who builds something fabulous that is worth the money.
post #13 of 86
You know, there's a lot of style in the house as it is now...thats all.
post #14 of 86
Most people with his kind of money would have simply bought something better a long time ago. I always thought of his legendary strong will as playing out as "I want it my way and I want it now." Steve's will also appears to have the endurance of one who laughs loudest and last.
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post #15 of 86
Quote:
Originally Posted by lkrupp View Post

These are probably the same people who try to stop cell towers from being erected in SF too. So they are the ones responsible for poor reception in the valley.

Actually it was an irrational attempt by a woman to save her childhood home. There was no way that that house deserved landmark status. I am saying this as an architect who has great respect for older architecture.
post #16 of 86
Quote:
Originally Posted by Rabbit_Coach View Post

Finally after 26 Years!! This is really ridiculous. And Historic come on!! it doesn't look like more than 50-80 Years old. I hope for steve, he finds a great architect who builds something fabulous that is worth the money.

It did not take 26 years. That's only how long he owned the property; it was only a few years ago that he declared his intention to demolish it. And yes, the property was historic, as determined by a professional architectural historian. This fact was never in question. It was not in dispute. The entire business was a procedural matter based on compliance with the California Environmental Quality Act.
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post #17 of 86
Steve really needs to get the dozers rolling!
post #18 of 86
Quote:
Originally Posted by Tods View Post

It makes no difference to me whether it is historic or who says so. The government has no right to tell Steve Jobs or anyone else that he can't bulldoze a building he owns on the basis of it being historical. If bulldozing it would put asbestos into the air, fine, require him to contain the pollution. If bulldozing it could potentially harm someone else's life or property, fine. But to use government force to prevent him from bulldozing his own property because people who don't own it like to look at it is tyranny.

Sorry, but your ideology does not trump reality. Historic preservation has been a Constitutionally approved use of local regulatory authority for a long time.
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post #19 of 86
Quote:
Originally Posted by Dr Millmoss View Post

Sorry, but your ideology does not trump reality. Historic preservation has been a Constitutionally approved use of local regulatory authority for a long time.

Just because it is a reality doesn't make it right, that line of logic would then excuse the horrible violence that happens on a daily basis around the world. Look at Iran, Burma, etc...

Good for Steve getting what he wants and what is rightfully his to do with.
post #20 of 86
Quote:
Originally Posted by Rabbit_Coach View Post

Finally after 26 Years!! This is really ridiculous. And Historic come on!! it doesn't look like more than 50-80 Years old. I hope for steve, he finds a great architect who builds something fabulous that is worth the money.

60-80 years *is* historic in California. Their "antique" stores are filled with things about that age. I visited a "historic" farmhouse that was only about 100 years old.
post #21 of 86
Quote:
Originally Posted by ericinaz View Post

Just because it is a reality doesn't make it right, that line of logic would then excuse the horrible violence that happens on a daily basis around the world. Look at Iran, Burma, etc...

Good for Steve getting what he wants and what is rightfully his to do with.

Nice analogy. Zoning regulations are now like repression and murder.

Ah, the 19th century -- it would be such a great time to live in, so long as we didn't have to actually live in it.
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post #22 of 86
One man's trash is another man's crusade.

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post #23 of 86
Quote:
Originally Posted by Phone-UI-Guy View Post

Steve really needs to get the dozers rolling!

Dozers?!?! The man better make quick work of it using C-4 before some group gets it in their head to fight a little longer.
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post #24 of 86
Quote:
Originally Posted by Booga View Post

60-80 years *is* historic in California. Their "antique" stores are filled with things about that age. I visited a "historic" farmhouse that was only about 100 years old.

The minimum age for eligibility for listing on the National Register of Historic Places is 50 years. This standard applies from Maine to Guam, not just in California. Some buildings are listed or found to be eligible at under 50 years of age, but it is substantially more difficult for them to qualify.
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post #25 of 86
Quote:
Originally Posted by Dr Millmoss View Post

Sorry, but your ideology does not trump reality. Historic preservation has been a Constitutionally approved use of local regulatory authority for a long time.

I understand what you are saying, Doc. I really do. But just to put things in perspective, think of where the San Francisco Bay Area would be if BART had not been built at all? If every time they started digging in the Market Street area, someone stood up and said "Wait! That sidewalk storefront is historic! There's no way they can tear that down an make it new!"

As it was, it only took what, over 20 something years to get the damn thing to run all the way the SF Airport? Different issue, I understand. But I think you know what I am getting at here.

Perhaps we need to take a lesson from Europe - where somehow they always manage to work it all out.
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post #26 of 86
Quote:
Originally Posted by Dr Millmoss View Post

Nice analogy. Zoning regulations are now like repression and murder.

Ah, the 19th century -- it would be such a great time to live in, so long as we didn't have to actually live in it.

No, but if you're going to insist on keep a building as a historical site then simply don't sell the land it sits on.

If you plan to make it a historical site after the land has been purchased - pay full price for that land to re-acquire it and deem it "historical" - never to be sold again.

Don't go around annexing property that isn't your, wasn't yours and never should be yours - that breaks just about every civil liberty that used to make America great.
post #27 of 86
Quote:
Originally Posted by macinthe408 View Post

\

I know Jobs has a shitload of money, but I'm pretty sure his neighbors aren't hurting financially either.

"I heard you're going to demolish your garden shed. Can you please give it to me? Oh, and help me pay for moving it."

Yeah. Most news outlets make this sound like the two people were doing a kindly favour and trying to save architectural history etc., but in fact these are the two burrs that have been under the saddle all along.

As far as I recall a similar proposal was made quite a while ago that required Steve Jobs to pay for the entire cost of moving and preserving it. It looks like in the interim the preservation folks came up with *some* of the money but still wanted Steve to chip in.

I would support saving it, but there is no way the owner (who doesn't even *like* the house), should be forced to pay anything for someone else's agenda. Despite what anyone says about this, if people really wanted to save this building and if it really was so important to do so, someone would have stepped forward with the financing by now.

It's been ten years for cripes sake.
post #28 of 86
Quote:
Originally Posted by Robin Huber View Post

Most people with his kind of money would have simply bought something better a long time ago. I always thought of his legendary strong will as playing out as "I want it my way and I want it now." Steve's will also appears to have the endurance of one who laughs loudest and last.

Steve also has a nice property in Palo Alto. It's actually adjacent two lots that he combined.

Again, he was forced to deal with preserving historic structures. To the chagrin of local preservationists, the legal solution was not the one that they had hoped for: the larger structure was demolished whereas a smaller (and older, I believe) building was preserved.
post #29 of 86
Thankfully PROPERTY RIGHTS HAVE FINALLY PREVAILED!
post #30 of 86
Quote:
Originally Posted by Tods View Post

It makes no difference to me whether it is historic or who says so. The government has no right to tell Steve Jobs or anyone else that he can't bulldoze a building he owns on the basis of it being historical. If bulldozing it would put asbestos into the air, fine, require him to contain the pollution. If bulldozing it could potentially harm someone else's life or property, fine. But to use government force to prevent him from bulldozing his own property because people who don't own it like to look at it is tyranny.

This is total BS.

By this measure the Taliban were perfectly fine blowing up that 2,000 year old Buddha, because, you know ... they "owned" it at the time. Forget about the fact that the men that blew it up were only alive for a relative blink of an eye, and that a million other folks "owned" it in the preceding 2,000 years.

Every society has rules, and every community has a right to preserve historical buildings and so forth. This is standard stuff and it's been this way in civilised countries since pretty much forever. Your point of view is extreme to say the least.

There is no such a thing as absolute rights and that's a good thing. Your rights end where others begin and if the whole community was against your decision, you should lose out, and rightfully so. In this case, it was one person against Steve Jobs with a community that basically didn't care one way or the other. If in fact the entire town was against tearing it down however, it would have to stay, and that's a great, democratic, and eminently fair thing.
post #31 of 86
Quote:
Originally Posted by justflybob View Post

I understand what you are saying, Doc. I really do. But just to put things in perspective, think of where the San Francisco Bay Area would be if BART had not been built at all? If every time they started digging in the Market Street area, someone stood up and said "Wait! That sidewalk storefront is historic! There's no way they can tear that down an make it new!"

As it was, it only took what, over 20 something years to get the damn thing to run all the way the SF Airport? Different issue, I understand. But I think you know what I am getting at here.

Perhaps we need to take a lesson from Europe - where somehow they always manage to work it all out.

We manage to work it all out too. As I said, in this case it was a matter of complying with the law, not a question of whether the city wanted to allow the demolition. That is always a local decision in the end. It only gets complicated (in California at least) when the local government tries to shortstop the state's environmental review laws.

Quote:
Originally Posted by bcode View Post

No, but if you're going to insist on keep a building as a historical site then simply don't sell the land it sits on.

If you plan to make it a historical site after the land has been purchased - pay full price for that land to re-acquire it and deem it "historical" - never to be sold again.

Don't go around annexing property that isn't your, wasn't yours and never should be yours - that breaks just about every civil liberty that used to make America great.

Zoning regulations were found to be Constitutional by the Supreme Court for the first time in 1926. Like I said, the 19th century was a great time to live in, provided we don't have to actually live there.
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post #32 of 86
Quote:
Originally Posted by Dr Millmoss View Post

It did not take 26 years. That's only how long he owned the property; it was only a few years ago that he declared his intention to demolish it. And yes, the property was historic, as determined by a professional architectural historian. This fact was never in question. It was not in dispute. The entire business was a procedural matter based on compliance with the California Environmental Quality Act.

The property is NOT historically significant. I know the place. I've been in the house. I used to party with Andrew Lloyd in the ballroom when his family owned it. It's a big, Spanish-colonial house built by a successful copper miner. That's it. Period. If you compare it to other, truly historic estates in the area, you'd agree that the Jackling house is nothing to write home about. Other, truly historic estates, local to the Jackling house, are Filoli, The Carolans, The Folger Estate, The Coleman Mansion, Uplands (Crocker, now Crystal Springs Uplands School), Douglas Hall (now called Stent Hall), the Fleischacker Estate, the Buck Estate... shall I go on?
post #33 of 86
Quote:
Originally Posted by MacinTek View Post

The property is NOT historically significant. I know the place. I've been in the house. I used to party with Andrew Lloyd in the ballroom when his family owned it. It's a big, Spanish-colonial house built by a successful copper miner. That's it. Period. If you compare it to other, truly historic estates in the area, you'd agree that the Jackling house is nothing to write home about. Other, truly historic estates, local to the Jackling house, are Filoli, The Carolans, The Folger Estate, The Coleman Mansion, Uplands (Crocker, now Crystal Springs Uplands School), Douglas Hall (now called Stent Hall), the Fleischacker Estate, the Buck Estate... shall I go on?

Amen. I have only seen the pictures, but it was obvious to me that this place is a very poorly done piece of Spanish revival architecture. A good example of a badly done McMansion of yesteryear. The same architect did some good ones, but this is not one of them. This sometimes happens when rich people hire good architects, then proceed to tell them exactly how to do their job. What you get is a pile of nouveau riche kitsch. Plow the damn thing under, the sooner the better. What Mr. Jobs will build will likely be an historically significant site 100 years from now.
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post #34 of 86
Quote:
Originally Posted by MacinTek View Post

The property is NOT historically significant. I know the place. I've been in the house. I used to party with Andrew Lloyd in the ballroom when his family owned it. It's a big, Spanish-colonial house built by a successful copper miner. That's it. Period. If you compare it to other, truly historic estates in the area, you'd agree that the Jackling house is nothing to write home about. Other, truly historic estates, local to the Jackling house, are Filoli, The Carolans, The Folger Estate, The Coleman Mansion, Uplands (Crocker, now Crystal Springs Uplands School), Douglas Hall (now called Stent Hall), the Fleischacker Estate, the Buck Estate... shall I go on?

Quote:
Originally Posted by Robin Huber View Post

Amen. I have only seen the pictures, but it was obvious to me that this place is a very poorly done piece of Spanish revival architecture. A good example of a badly done McMansion of yesteryear. The same architect did some good ones, but this is not one of them. This sometimes happens when rich people hire good architects, then proceed to tell them exactly how to do their job. What you get is a pile of nouveau riche kitsch. Plow the damn thing under, the sooner the better. What Mr. Jobs will build will likely be an historically significant site 100 years from now.

You are both incorrect. The significance of the house was never in dispute.
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post #35 of 86
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Originally Posted by Dr Millmoss View Post

You are both incorrect. The significance of the house was never in dispute.

No? Then why is it that there are 10,000 articles about people attacking Jobs for wanting to knock it down, but not a single article explaining what historical significance it has?

It's a big house - one of many built by a famous architect. What is so special in this house that deserves taking away Jobs' right to his own property?
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post #36 of 86
Quote:
Originally Posted by jragosta View Post

No? Then why is it that there are 10,000 articles about people attacking Jobs for wanting to knock it down, but not a single article explaining what historical significance it has?

It's a big house - one of many built by a famous architect. What is so special in this house that deserves taking away Jobs' right to his own property?

Lots of material is available to explain the significance, if you were to take the trouble to find them. I've explained it in detail myself, right here, numerous times. But the only point I am making now is that the significance question was NEVER the substance of the battle. Never, as in, not at all. Ironically perhaps, the city authorized the demolition years ago, but they failed to comply with their responsibilities under state law. That's what created the fight, not a dispute over significance. Not as sexy perhaps, not as entertaining as a bunch of people who know nothing whatsoever about a subject weighing in as if they were instant experts -- but the facts just the same.
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post #37 of 86
Mr. Jobs, PLEASE donate the organ and pipes to a church! Real pipe organs are a rare and fabulous instrument!
post #38 of 86
Quote:
Originally Posted by Dr Millmoss View Post

You are both incorrect. The significance of the house was never in dispute.

I almost always find you spot on, but so on this not so much. How about some evidence? Personal assertions don't carry much weight by themselves.

On the face of it it would seem to me that the significance is very much in dispute, because they have been disputing it all these years. You cite a "professional architectural historian" but fail to say who hired him/her. Was it the State? Was he/she hired by the plaintiffs? It makes a difference. I am not a professional architectural historian, but I do have some credentials in this area. I wrote the definitive history of the Merced Theatre of Los Angeles (built 1870) by architect Ezra Kysor. I am disputing the historical significance of this house based on what I have seen. I went over the photos of the interior that were published a year or so ago, and it is a terrible mish-mosh of styles. The question is: of what significance is it? I would say, not much. That may be enough for some, but not for me. What say you?
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post #39 of 86
Quote:
Originally Posted by Dr Millmoss View Post

Not as sexy perhaps, not as entertaining as a bunch of people who know nothing whatsoever about a subject weighing in as if they were instant experts -- but the facts just the same.

Fair enough. Since you brought it up, on what is your expertise based?

PS - This isn't a pissing contest. I honestly hope that you are an expert in this area and can articulate what it is about this particular structure that makes it one of the better representations of this architect's work. I prefer to be wrong. The reason I come to this site is to learn something new, not to confirm my prejudices or ignorance.
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post #40 of 86
Quote:
Originally Posted by Robin Huber View Post

I almost always find you spot on, but so on this not so much. How about some evidence? Personal assertions don't carry much weight by themselves.

On the face of it it would seem to me that the significance is very much in dispute, because they have been disputing it all these years. You cite a "professional architectural historian" but fail to say who hired him/her. Was it the State? Was he/she hired by the plaintiffs? It makes a difference. I am not a professional architectural historian, but I do have some credentials in this area. I wrote the definitive history of the Merced Theatre of Los Angeles (built 1870) by architect Ezra Kysor. I am disputing the historical significance of this house based on what I have seen. I went over the photos of the interior that were published a year or so ago, and it is a terrible mish-mosh of styles. The question is: of what significance is it? I would say, not much. That may be enough for some, but not for me. What say you?

You might want to check out some of the many other threads on this topic which have cropped up over the course of this battle, which probably occurred before you turned up here. I've done a lot of explaining, which I really don't want to repeat.

Most likely the city would have required Steve to submit a report prepared by a qualified historian when he made an application for demolition. This was long before there were any plaintiffs because it was entirely a procedural matter at that point. The report found the property to be historically and architecturally significant, which based on the owner and architect, was close to a slam-dunk. At that point the property is a historic resource for the purposes of the California Environmental Quality Act. Now the city can't issue the permit without studying the impacts of doing so, and considering alternatives and mitigating impacts. This is where the city stumbled, and where lawsuit came from. They were sued, not Steve. The battle was never over whether the property was historically significant, a factual finding that had already been made, but over whether the requirements of the state environmental laws had been fulfilled by the city once that finding was made.

Quote:
Originally Posted by Robin Huber View Post

Fair enough. Since you brought it up, on what is your expertise based?

Architectural historian, over 30 years experience.
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