Court grants Phoenix Chinese Cultural Center backers temporary reprieve

668 North 44th St.

By Jessica Boehm |The Republic

The Chinese Cultural Center’s iconic roof and outer decor will remain intact for at least another month after a temporary order from the Arizona Court of Appeals.

For now, it’s a victory for the preservationists who want to protect the unique Chinese elements on the outside of the Phoenix building, located at 668 N. 44th St. However, they still face an uphill battle to ensure the center’s long-term protection.

A three-judge panel temporarily halted orders by a Maricopa County Superior Court judge earlier this month, which would have allowed the new majority owner of the center, 668 North, to move forward with demolition.

The appeals court’s order prevents 668 North from moving forward with outside construction — but only until the court can decide whether to uphold the lower court’s ruling.

Jason Rose, spokesman for 668 North, said the court’s order is procedural and was expected.

“We remain hopeful that the court of appeals will uphold the lower court’s decision, which followed the city of Phoenix’s decision to issue a building permit. The trend is certainly toward respecting property rights,” he said.

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