Got Googie? Downey's Broiler Is Back | Squid Ink | Los Angeles | Los Angeles News and Events | LA Weekly
Culinary History

Got Googie? Downey's Broiler Is Back

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Mon, Sep 28, 2009 at 6:14 AM

The history of Downey's Big Boy Broiler is as checkered as its newest mascot's overalls.

Formerly Johnie's Broiler, and Harvey's before that, the Broiler and its boomerang canopies exemplified the pseudo-futuristic 1950s architectural style known as Googie. Designed by architect Paul B. Clayton in 1958, the site qualified as a Los Angeles landmark in 2003. Apparently that wasn't enough to stop the demolition of the property in 2007, and the Broiler has been history ever since.

Until now.

click to enlarge D. THOMAS
  • D. Thomas

click to enlarge D. THOMAS
  • D. Thomas

click to enlarge D. THOMAS
  • D. Thomas

An alliance of architecture buffs, classic-car enthusiasts, burger-loving students, and the L.A. Conservancy made enough waves to persuade Bob's Big Boy franchise owner Jim Louder to rebuild the structure in the exact image of its former self. With the addition of a certain chubby icon.

To celebrate, the Friends of Johnie's Broiler a.k.a. the Coalition to Rebuild the Broiler hosted an afternoon party, Saturday, September 26, in the dirt parking lot outside the not-yet-ready-for-prime-time diner. Live music courtesy Downey homeboys The Blasters.

Bob's Big Boy Broiler is opening soon at 7447 Firestone Blvd., just off the 710 freeway, in Downey.

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