HomeChinese AmericanCourt Order Temporarily Preserves Icons of Chinese Culture in Phoenix

Court Order Temporarily Preserves Icons of Chinese Culture in Phoenix

Chinese Cultural Center protest
Via Facebook

The demolition of a Chinese roof and other cultural elements of the Chinese Cultural Center in Phoenix has been halted for now.

Azcentral.com reports that a three-judge panel has blocked a lower court order that would have allowed construction at the center.

The order means the Arizona Court of Appeals will have the opportunity to hear an appeal in the case from a Chinese restaurant owner in the building who argues removal of the cultural elements interfere with his right to run a Chinese restaurant.

True North Center bought 95 percent of the building and has plans to gut the building for an office complex. Much of the interior of the building has already been gutted and remodeling is underway.

Preservationists and members of the Chinese community have fought renovation of the building which they consider a cultural icon.

RELATED: Community Battles New Owner over Chinese Cultural Center

“This ruling gives hope for the minority owner, as well as the community, that equal rights for all includes them,” said Elizabeth Mann, the original developer of the Chinese Cultural Center. “The court ruling helps to preserve (the) Phoenix landmark Chinese Cultural Center. It is a place of history and cultural honoring this great diversified nation, Phoenix and its Chinese community.”

A spokesperson for the developers says it expects to prevail at the end.

“We respect the legal process, and fully hope and expect that it will respect private-property rights,” said Jason Rose.

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