Councilman Sal DiCiccio, who represents the Arcadia district in Arizona, has said he will ask for a delay of today’s Council vote, which could potentially give Landmark status to the David Wright House, designed by Frank Lloyd Wright in the 1950s for his son David.
According to USA Today, DiCiccio will ask for a delay until January. City staff will also ask for a delay until Dec. 19, since they claim that the public was insufficiently notified of the meeting. The delay, which DiCiccio wants in order to start fundraising efforts, would be in the house’s best-interest: in Arizona, Landmark Designation only safeguards from demolition for three years, and the developers have expressed their intention to “to knock [the house] down” once that time has passed.
More information on the David Wright House, after the break…
Robert Joffe, the real-estate agent representing the developers, told The Arizona Republic that this has been the hardest transaction of his career. Two prospective buyers as well as a cooperative of preservation-minded individuals have already backed out from buying the house, now on the market for $2.5 million: “We’re trying everything we can, but there’s been a lot of talk and nobody’s stepping up [...] It seems like every time I turn my head, I hit a wall. And the owners could take the house off the market at any time.”
Councilman DiCiccio doesn’t think it wise nor fair to depend on one philanthropic buyer “to be shouldering this responsibility.” Instead, he wants to call upon the public and preservation community to come together and collectively fundraise to preserve the house – and he’s willing to put his money where his mouth is. As he told The Arizona Republic, “I will write the first check.”
Missed our previous coverage? Catch up on this demolition saga, here.