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Los Angeles' Skyline Could Get Less Boring

Our ho-hum skyline (Photo by djjewelz via the LAist Featured Photos Pool on Flickr)
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Los Angeles has one of the more boring metropolitan skylines thanks to a 1958 rule requiring skyscrapers that are flat on top (just like the 90s haircut).

The mandatory flat-tops were required so that helicopters could land on buildings in a time of emergency, but the city announced in a release that the time has come to overturn that rule: "The new policy will allow architects to create the kind of iconic pitched-roof building designs seen in other world-class cities while meeting the highest standards for fire-life safety."

Mayor Eric Garcetti and Councilmember José Huizar joined the Los Angeles Fire Department to overturn the rule. They say that technology to make skyscrapers safe has come a long way since 1958. Firefighters can now make rescues via reinforced elevator shafts and stairwells. Los Angeles is a bit behind the times, and up until now we were the only American city that requires a helipad on every skyscraper.

"Los Angeles is the creative capital of the world, but our skyline is full of buildings that are uniformly flat," Mayor Garcetti. "We want better fire protection and better design from our buildings. We must always be innovating, and that’s what this policy does."

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One of the first buildings that will take advantage of this relaxed rule will be the 73-story Wilshire Grand, which will be the tallest building west of Chicago.