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Victorians fall to make L.A. skyline

April 02, 2006

April 2, 1959: Mayor Norris Poulson signed the ordinance, adopted in a 12-2 City Council vote, that launched the bulldozing of Bunker Hill. Demolition was to clear the way for construction of a series of skyscrapers. An article in The Times a day earlier said of plans for the 136-acre site: "Los Angeles will acquire something it never really had before when the $315-million Bunker Hill redevelopment is finished -- a skyline." The once-grand neighborhood of Victorian homes, gothic mansions and hotels had decayed largely into row after row of rundown rooming houses. In 1969, the last resident of the hill, Bunnie Burns, was removed from the Northern Hotel at 420 W. 2nd St., where she had lived in Room 825 since 1952. She had not ventured beyond the hotel since 1964.

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