The W.P. Story Building at 6th & Broadway. This garage entrance before & after is a spot-on representation of what was over a 1/2 century of neglect in Downtown Los Angeles. I walked by this entrance hundreds of times before finally noticing there was likely more to it than meets the eye.
Grauman’s Metropolitan first opened its doors on January 26, 1923. Built shortly after the Million Dollar and the Egyptian Theatres, Sid Grauman spared no expense in creating what would be the largest theatre in all of Southern California.
With a seating capacity of 3,387 seats, the auditorium was enormous. It was the second largest theatre to be built in the West, only behind the Fox Theater in San Francisco, which amazingly had 4,651 seats. The next largest theatre in Los Angeles was the RKO Hillstreet (downtown) with 2,890 seats, which met the same fate of demolition as the two aforementioned movie houses.
It is a rare instance to come upon an abandoned building in Los Angeles that has not been scrapped and gutted, left with none of its original character, much less previous signs of life.
With much patience and a pittance of luck, we came upon a 1913 Beaux Arts tower that still housed plenty of treasures inside. Although the remains pointed to the late ’60s or early ’70s, it was enough to get us excited.