Much has been written of the miraculous resurrection of architect Paul B. Clayton’s 1958 original Harvey’s, then Johnie’s, and now Chattel Architecture’s 2009 restoration Bob’s Big Boy Broiler. One has only to look through the pages of the marvelous book Googie Redux at the laundry list of buildings that have been bulldozed into history during the past few decades, to recognize what an amazing feat has been accomplished.
Thanks to the tireless efforts of the Friends of Johnie’s, the Coalition to Save Harvey’s Broiler, the City of Downey, Bob’s Big Boy proprietor Jim Louder, Adriene Biondo, and the Los Angeles Conservancy, the reborn Broiler is once again serving malts for all! For detailed accounts of the history, illegal demolition and rebirth of the Broiler, as well as plenty of wonderful photographs be sure to check out these sites:
I was lucky enough to be the first to dance inside the vacant restaurant during its reconstruction, and then during the first car show in the parking lot. These photos were taken during that car show in October 2009.