It’s not really saving the sign — which was never threatened. What was in doubt was whether the land nearby would be developed into high-end homes, which based on today’s tastes usually means stucco, faux-Tuscan monoliths. The corollary would be if some developer tried to build skyscrapers on Ellis Island.
Today it was announced that Hugh Hefner chipped in the final $900,000 to reach the $12.5 million it is taking a public trust to purhcase the property. A host of other studios and industry figures, including Steven Spielberg, Norman Lear and Tom Hanks, also chipped in. Gov. Arnold Schwarzenegger made the announcement today.
My question: Had they not been able to raise the money, how demoralizing would have it been for Los Angeles, which is on the brink of going broke?